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Libya 117, America 84, Fisa 81, Chris Stevens 74, Us 70, United States 53, U.s. 39, Michigan 19, Cairo 17, Obama 14, Mr. Smith 13, Nevada 13, Washington 13, Mr. Conyers 12, Stevens 12, Egypt 12, Maryland 11, California 11, Tripoli 10, Mr. Rogers 9,
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  CSPAN    Capitol Hill Hearings    News/Business.  

    September 12, 2012
    8:00 - 1:00am EDT  

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the bureau of middle eastern affairs. he had an education that was really unbelievably strong and powerful. he graduated from berkeley. he had a law degree from hastings, one of the premier law schools in the country. he has a masters degree from national war college. what a loss to our country. our diplomatic corps is filled with admirable and dedicated public servants, and the four americans who lost their lives yesterday exemplified the courage and sacrifice that happens every day in diplomatic posts around the globe. they learn the language, they live with the people where they go. as i've indicated, eiffel traveled to many of the american embassies abroad. i've always been so impressed and grateful for the leadership and i communicate that to them
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every chance i get. i'm so -- we're so fortunate to have had for the last three and a half years hillary clinton leading the state department. i've indicated ambassador stevens was not a political appointment -- appointee. he was a foreign service officer, as i indicated served in the peace corps, spent his life giving of his time and his talents to promote democracy around the world. i supported president obama's directive to provide whatever resources are necessary to keep our personnel in libya safe. i'll continue to monitor the situation as we learn more about mr. mcconnell: madam president? the presiding officer: the republican leader. mr. mcconnell: we learned yesterday and are receiving reports this morning of the
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attacks against the united states embsy in cairo and the u.s. consulate in bengazi in libya. in libya, our ambassador chris stevens and three other americans were killed in the service of our nation. our thoughts and sympathies today are with the families of these brave americans. these attacks remind us of the sacrifices made on a daily basisaway foreign service officers, diplomatic security personnel and our marine security guards. i joi my colleagues in strongly condemning the murder of these innocent americans, and i strongly support employing every available tool at our dissal to ensure t safety of americans overseas and to hunt down those responsible for these attacks. yesterday, we commemorated the anniversary of the attacks of september 11, and today we are
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reminded that brave americans serve us every day at the risk of their own lives. we honor the americans we lost in libya and we will stand united in our response. among the things we can agree on in washington is that the attacks on the u.s. and its representatives ll be met with resolve and that america's presence and defense of our national interests across the globe will not be deterred by the acts of violent extremists. i yi objection is granted. mr. mccain: mr. president, it's with a heavy heart that i rise today to speak about the horrific attack yesterday on the u.s. consulate in been gaza that killed -- benghazi that killed four american citizens. the two confirmed thus far among the dead are slawn smith, an air force veteran turned information management officer
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and ambassador chris stevens, one of america's finest and bravest foreign service officers. i didn't know sean smith, i know he's a great american who served his country, but i had gotten to know chris stevens quite well. and ambassador chris stevens' death, the libyan people have lost a champion and believer in the peaceful aspirations of their democratic revolution. the american people have lost a selfless and dedicated servant of our interests and our values, and i have lost a friend. my thoughts and prayers today are with chris' family and the loved ones of his fallen colleagues. my god grant them comfort in their time of grief. our most urge vent -- urgent order of business is now is to
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ensure our citizens in libya and egypt and elsewhere across the world are safe. americans look to the government in libya and egypt and elsewhere to meet their responsibilities in this regard. we also look to the libyan government to ensure that those responsible for yesterday's attack in benghazi are swiftly brought to justice. in all of these critical tasks we are confident our government will provide all necessary assistance and support. yesterday's attacks are an important reminder so many of american civilians and diplomats and development professionals are risking everything, everything, to advance our nation's interests and values abroad. we must do everything in our power to ensure their security. at the same time, our thoughts turn to broader concerns. the morning of our fallen friends -- mourning of our fallen friends and how we as a
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nation should respond to these tragic events. one of my most memorable meetings with chris steeives was last april in benghazi. as envoy to the libyan opposition chris had traveled to benghazi at personal risk to represent the country that he loved so much while libya was still gripped in a brutal fight for freedom. it was clear there was nowhere that chris would rather have been than libya. we spent the day together meeting libyan opposition leaders and many ordinary citizens who spoke movingly about how much the opportunity to finally live in freedom meant to them. and how grateful they were for america's support. chris stevens embodied that support, and his passion for his mission was infectious. i kept in touch with him often and frequently after my visit, i was very happy when president obama nominated him to be
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america's ambassador to the new libya. the last time i saw chris stevens was shortly after he had taken up his post during my most recent visit to trip olie. -- tripoli. i remember the lighter moments we spent together including when chris insisted on personally making me a capital ewe china', a -- chan achino, which he deard he carried out with proficiency. that was on the morning of july 7, the day libyans voted in their first election in half a century. chris stevens and i spent the day together again, traveling around tripoli, visiting polling places and speaking with libyan voters. we met a man whose father had been murdered by qadhafi's henchmen. we met a woman whose brothers
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had given their lives fighting for liberation. we met countless others including many older libyans who were voting for the first time in their lives. and everywhere we went, we were greeted by crowds of cheering libyans bursting with pride and eager to shake our hands and express their gratitude for america's support. it was one of the most moving experiences of my life, and it was only made better by the fact that i got to share it with our outstanding ambassador, chris stevens. what we saw together on that day was the real libya, the peaceful desire of millions of people to live in freedom and democracy. the immense gratitude they felt for america's support for them. and their strong desire to build a new partnership between our nations. that's why i'm not surprised
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that senior libyan leaders were among the first to condemn the horrific attack that killed chris and his colleagues, and that's why i was not surprised to learn from our secretary of state that many libyans fought to defend our people and our consulate in benghazi when they came under attack, that some were wounded while doing so. and that it was libyans who sought to get chris and his colleagues to the hospital. and that's why we can't afford to view the despicable acts of violence perpetrate he yet by a small group of fanatics as in any way representative of the country and the people of libya. that's not the real libya. the libya that chris stevens knew and learned to love so well. after such a heartbreaking loss for our nation, i know that
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many americans are asking whether the united states was naive or miss taken to support -- mistaken to support the vast movement for change that cell phone as the arab spring. i know many americans may feel a temptation especially with so many domestic and economic challenges facing us here at home, to distance ourselves from people and events in libya and egypt and elsewhere in the middle east. we cannot afford to go down that path. yesterday's attack in benghazi was the work of a small group of violent extremists whose goals and actions could not be more at odds with those of the people and government of libya. the libyan revolution began peacefully and was dedicated throughout to the ideals of freedom and justice and democratic change. and when libyans turned out by
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the millions to elect a new government in july, they gave the plurality of their vote not to religious fanatics but to a political party led by a moderate tech know carat and -- technospcrat and committed to friendship with the united states. libyans rose up last year to free themselves from exactly the kinds of murderers and terrorists who killed our american citizens yesterday in benghazi. their enemies are our enemies, and they remain as committed as ever to imposing their evil ideology through violence on people in libya and the middle east and ultimately on us. they want to hijack the arab spring for their own insidious purposes, and if we turn our backs now on the millions of people in libya and egypt and syria and other countries across
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the middle east, people who share so many of our values and interests, people who are the true authors of the arab spring, we will hand our common enemies the terrorists and extremists, the very victory that they seek. we were right to take the side of the libyan people and others in the religious who share their peaceful aspirations and we would be gravely mistaken to walk away from them now. to do so would only be a betrayal of everything that chris stevens and his colleagues believed in and ultimately gave their lives for. it would be a betrayal of america's highest values and our own enduring national interest in supporting people in the middle east and the world who want to live in peace and freedom. mr. president, i'm pleased to
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be joined by my friend from connecticut and i know that he shares with me the sorrow that we and all americans feel at the loss of a brave and dedicated american. but it will be a long time before we forget chris stevens, because he will stand as a shining example of patriotism and love of country. chris stevens was not unaware of the danger that he faced. he was privy to intelligence information and others. but he went forward and did his job with a smile, the love of his country, and love of the country where he was serving. i cannot be more proud of ambassador chris stevens. mr. lieberman: mr. president? the presiding officer: the
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senator from connecticut. mr. lieberman: mr. president, i thank my friend from arizona for his very eloquent statement. i associate myself with it. it strikes me as i listen that it was no accident that these violent extreme extremists launched this attack on the american consulate in benghazi, tripoli on 9/11, a day of infamy in our history, a day when people across our country and really around the world were commemorating the worst terrorist attack in our history which was september 11, 2001. those who perpetrated the attack on the consulate in benghazi which resulted in the death of our ambassador, chris stevens, carried out an act of terrorism and barbarism that they hope will sow fear and hatred between
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americans and muslims, just as osama bin laden and his followers hoped the attacks of 9/11 would do 11 years ago. but we did not let bin laden succeed then, and we will not let these violent extremists who killed chris stevens yesterday in benghazi succeed in dividing america and the west from muslims and the arab world. well-intentioned people in both great communities will rise up and join together to renounce these extremists and killers. i want speak for a moment about ambassador stevens. simply put, chris stevens was one of the finest, bravest, most spirited, most talented diplomats in our nation's service. as a volunteer in the peace
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corps, he served in morocco where he was inspired to pursue a lifetime of service in the middle east. when the uprising against moammar qadhafi began in february of last year, chris was the deputy chief of mission of our ambassador in tripoli, libya. he was vaikd along with other -- evacuated along with other american personnel from the country but returned to libya within weeks as the special envoy of the united states of america to the opposition there. courageously slipping into rebel-held benghazi on board a cargo freighter. it was an act of bravery that typified chris stevens' service to our country, and his devotion to our nation's ideals and his commitment to build bridges between americans and arabs, americans and muslims. chris remained in benghazi
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throughout the war, standing with the people of libya during some of the darkest and most difficult hours in their struggle for freedom. he became, in fact, the bright symbol of america, heroic and inspiring figure to many libyans. as senator mccain and senator graham and i heard during our visits there and was thus the natural choice of president obama to become our ambassador to tripoli after the cad cads -- qadhafi regime fell. this is why his death at the hand of violent extremists in benghazi which was the seat of the revolution against qadhafi, is so tragic and infuriating. there is obviously much we still don't know about what happened at our consulate in benghazi yesterday, but what is clear is that these attackers have to be apprehended and must be
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punished. i'm encouraged but not surprised by the statements of libya's leaders condemning this attack and i say i'm not surprised because these statements of condemnation of those who killed chris stevens are consistent with what i know the leaders of the new libya to be, what i know to be their profound admiration and love for chris stevens and their respect and gratitude for the united states of america. we look now to the libyan government to act swiftly and decisively and to our own government to provide the libyans whatever support they need to find the attackers and killers. while a specific group of individuals was responsible for this evil act and their target immediately was the americans in that consulate, but really their
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target was the new order in libya. and they were animated in this by an ideology that is now all too familiar to us that we cannot ignore or excuse. this hateful and violent ideology is a threat not just to the lives of americans like chris stevens and the three others who died yesterday in benghazi, but to the future of libya and the future of the muslim world. it is the exact opposite of the ideals that inspired millions of libyans to rise up last year against qadhafi to realize their dreams of a life of dignity, democracy and human rights. for that reason, it is imperative now for those libyan people themselves to echo their leaders and condemn this violence and take on the extremists who have taken shelter in their midst and who
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threaten to hijack their revolution and imperil the future of their country, returning them to days as dark as under qadhafi. i know that the overwhelming majority of libyans reject this violent extremist agenda. they want a good education for their children. they want foreign investment that will create jobs and raise their standard of living. after 42 years of despair and oppression under qadhafi, they badly want again to be part of the world, part of the modern world, and the united states should stand ready and willing to help them on that path. the fact is that the people who killed chris stevens yesterday in benghazi do not represent the people of libya or their elected leadership. but these killings require confronting the extremist minority that imperils this
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future, the fanatics who want a clash of civilizations between muslims and the west and who will try to justify their violence in the name of islam. they are wrong. they are mistaken. they are on the wrong side of history. and finally, let me come back home and say, to echo what senator mccain has said, that i know there will be some here in our country who, in the wake of this attack, will be tempted to argue that it shows that america's support for the libyan revolution was naive or mistaken, that the arab spring will ultimately be defined not by a desire for democracy and freedom among the people of the middle east and arab world, but by the dark fanaticism of al qaeda and its associates and united states should give up trying to support people in this part of the world instead of -- and instead retrench back here at home. that would be terribly wrong.
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that would misunderstand the motivations of the people who have risen up in the arab world to overthrow the totalitarian governments that dominated their lives. they don't want the fanaticism of al qaeda. they want the bright light of a democratic future. we cannot allow what happened yesterday to be a victory for the extremists and the terrorists, because to do so would be a betrayal of everything ambassador chris stevens stood for, which is to say a betrayal of america's best ideals. mr. president, i note the presence on the floor of of the senator from south carolina and i would yield to him at this time. mr. graham: thank you. mr. president, i'll speak just very briefly. the presiding officer: the senator from south carolina. mr. graham: there's not a whole lot to -- to be added to the eloquent statements of my two
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friends other than just to be here and to let the family of chris stevens know that we saw in your loved one what you sa saw -- a wonderful man who did great things with a life cut way too short. i don't think most americans can ever appreciate the leadership that chris provided in libya and throughout the world at a time when we needed it the most. so america's lost one of her greatest diplomats. the libyans have lost one of their best friends. and the sphream lost their dear loved one. and the one thing i can say for sure, as senator lieberman just mentioned it, don't compound this tragedy. the worst possible outcome is to take the -- death of this wonderful, noble man and use it as an excuse sceus t and withdrm the region andal trough to return to the extremists -- and
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allow it to return to the extremists. to the americans who are trust frustrated, i totally get it. but the arab spring -- call it what you like -- but it is an historic opportunity to change things in the middle east. but it will not come without fight. what we're trying to do in the mid-east and what the people in the mideast are trying to into have a better life for themselves. if you're a young people, you've been exposed to a life outside of the country life of the country in which you leave and you see it can be better. and quite frankly, you're demanding a better life. you're demanding an equal say if you're a young woman. and you're demanding a class if it's not available to you today. chris stevens risked his live because he understood those ideals were just understood what we were fighting. and the libyan people who who we are fighting are the ones who have no interest in this agenda, of being able to choose a better path for young people, to being tolerant, open, accept free markets and have a place where people can live their own
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dreams. and the world of which we're fighting, your dreams are defined by the ayatollahs. your aspirations are defined by someone else's view of where you should go and what you should be based on their interpretation of god's plan for you. now, that to me is so unacceptable that is com compels people like cis steven cis likeo risk their lives. the people in these countries now have been exposed to a different way of life. given the capacity, they have the will to fight back. but if you think this is going to be done without a struggle, we're kidding ourselves. chris knew that. he knew that the fight that was going on for the heart and soul of the arab spring in libya was a fight worth engaging in and, yes, risking one's life for. and what more can you say about
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a fellow human being, an american than the fact that they realized that their time on earth could be best spent in service of a cause, as senator mccain says, greater than themselves? chris understood what was at stake. he went to a place that he did not have to go. he accepted risks that he could have avoided. and he did it for all the right reasons. and the one thing we should all unite around is that what compelled chris stevens to risk his life is absolutely in our national security interest and that is to get the mideast right, have a second opportunity never known before in the mideast to live in peace with people who in the past wanted to kill us all. and i am convinced if we stick with it and we learn the lessons of chris stevens' life, we will eventually prevail. because the ones who want to kill us all are really a
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minority. the ones who would live with us in peace if they could just need our help. and let it be said that chris stevens was there to help. thank you. mr. mccain: i thank my friend for his eloquent words. i'd also again like to emphasize, there was four brave americans -- four -- shawn smith was one of them, a truly great american. there are two others we don't even know their identity. so i hope that the families who have suffered this loss appreciate that we grieve for all. we had the opportunity of knowing chris smith. excuse me, chris stevens. i did meet shawn smith and the others. we mourn for them and we thank them for their service to this nation. and i'd just ask my friend from connecticut, wouldn't it be the worst legacy of chris stevens'
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service to this country would be a movement for the united states to withdraw to fortress america, to renounce our -- our -- our service to the world in helping these countries achieve the same democracy and freedom that our forefathers strived for? i do not mean to use his death as any kind of political agenda, but i think my friend and i remember him well enough to know that the worst outcome of this tragedy would be for the united states to withdraw. in fact, i am confident that if he were here, he would be urging us to get right back in, get -- bring these extremists to justice and press on with the
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democracy and freedom that the people of libya deserve and have earned at great loss of blood and treasure. mr. lieberman: mr. president, i couldn't agree more with my friend from arizona. it would -- it would really dishonor the service of chris stevens and the three other americans who served us in libya if their murders by these extremists led us to retrench and pull out of libya and stop supporting the new libyan government, democratically elected, pull out of other parts of the arab world. that would be exactly the opposite of what ambassador stevens devoted his life to. as i mentioned, inspired by his experience as a peace corps volunteer in morocco, devoted the rest of his life to service on america's behalf in the -- in the middle east. the last thing he would want this murder to do is to lead us to pull out, leave the area.
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and it would also be the fondest hope of the attackers, the extremists. why do that he tack? they attack to kill individual people but they really attack to, as i said before, push america out and create a war between the western world, america and islam. it's not natural. it's not the direction in which history is going. history is going much more towards integration. in fact, the revolution in lib libya, which has gone so successfully when you consider the 40 years of dictatorship they live under. they've held a free election. they elected what i would describe as a moderate rule of law, slate to run country. but those uprisings in libya,
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egypt, tunisia and now in syria are -- are the most profound rejection and defeat for the extremism of al qaeda and its allies and presumably this group that attacked the american consulate in benghazi yesterday. i understand that the results of some of the first elections of -- are unclear, in some sense unsettled to some people here, but the fact is they've chosen democracy. and people are self-governing and they're looking for a better life, and that's exactly the opposite of what bin laden, al qaeda, and i would guess the people who killed chris stevens yesterday desire. so senator mccain is absolutely right, this is the day -- i can almost hear chris stevens saying, come on, get up, stay in the fight; don't surrender to the crazies, to the
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fanatics, to the violent extremists. stand with the overwhelming majority, with the people of libya who want just what we want, a better future for themselves and their families. mr. mccain: i'd just like to say in conclusion i thank my old, dear friend from connecticut and the senator from south carolina. and i finally would just share with my colleagues, on last july 7th, i was in tripoli with chris stevens and it was the first free and fair election the libyan people have ever experienced. as we went from polling place to polling place, we met people who had met -- who had lost brothers, husbands, fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers at the hands of one of the more brutal butchers that has ever been on earth, moammar qadhafi. that night we went to the square where some 200,000 people
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driving around, honking horns, celebrating, waving libyan flags, really an auspicious start. and as nor lieberma senator lied out, it was a moderate group who were elected to govern libya but the people of libya. chris stevens was recognized by all of them. they knew chris stevens, and they knew he represented, the united states of america. so those are memories that i will never forget, and i hope that his family will appreciate the magnificent service that chris safely as well. when i woke up this morning, i woke up to terrible news, to learn that our ambassador in libya had been killed by a mob.
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so we've lost ambassador chris stevens. we lost three others at the american embassy in libya. and it is a terrible tragedy. and at the same time yesterday our embassy in cairo was stormed. but thanks to the vigilance its leadership and our wonderful marine corps, their defending the embassy, we lost no one in cairo. but, madam president, i, first of all, want to extend to all of the filies who lost someone in libya overnight my extreme and definite condolences and sympathy. i'm at a little bit of a loss for words because these tragedies that to our men and women who serve at our embassy happen all too frequently, and
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then we say a grateful nation never forgets, and then we go on to bash our federal employees and our state department people saying oh, they have these cushy jobs in exotic places and they must be out eating brie somewhere. i lost the cold war bombings diplomats, ambassador bartley, head of our consolate service, was serving there, his son interned there his summer, wanted to be like his dad. they died there. they died there. but he was at his duty station. and, you know, it's been almost 15 years. and then, oh yeah. well, it's not an oh yeah. these men and women are serving the united states of america. they were at their duty station. they were trying to help libya rise up now to be able to create a government and be able to create opportunity for its own people, and they gave their
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lives. ambassador chris stevens had alreadyerved two tours in libya, but wanted to go back again at this new moment in history to stand up, to help libya stand up a true government that was free and would give their people a chance at democracy and participating in a new middle east. and then there was sean smith, who was a ten-year veteran of foreign service. he was an information magement officer. he had served in iraq. he's a father, a father of two children, a devoted husband. we now know what happened to them. so we must continue our strong partnership with libya after the fallf qadhafi. but i call upon the new leadership, call for calm, call for tolerance, call for you're angry. there are ways to do protests
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and so on. you don't have to go around killing the american ambassador when o air people, our air force flew over libya and our president and our congress work to support this new government coming up. and then there's cairo. because of anger over a video -- and i don't know about this video. i don't know its content. but i do know the outcome, that our embassy in cairo was stormed. they tore dn our american flag, they replaced it with another flag. but we are under the flag of the united states of america and our flag is in egypt, our flag is in egypt because we are great allies to the egyptian government and great supporters of the egyptian people as they come through the arab spring and again trying to create a new day and a new way. i say to ambassador paterson and
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the entiretaff, again, our thoughts and prayers are with you. i was in cairo. i know what they do every day. i know how during the arab spring many of them were locked in the embassy trying to keep our government functioning while their own families had to be evacuated. some didn't see their families for three weeks because they were inside the pwaepl is i, they couldn't leave, and we had the most massive evacuation of civilian employees in our history, since really the beginning of some other armed conflicts. so i say to those embassy staff, both our wonderful ambassador, paterson, but to a lot of the little people who work at the embassy, people who keep the commercial commerce office open, the people doing the wonderful work with n.g.o.'s to show them how to work, to build a free and new kind of society and also to the foreign nationals who work in you are eassy.
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so we think about you. i say to the leadership of those countries again, call for calm, call for tolerance. but i say to my colleagues here, we've got to call for calm and tolerance right in this institution. we've got to really support our men and women in the state department, our men and women in the milary, all who serve overseas are representatives of united states of america, whether you are the peace corps or the marine corps, whether you are the foreign service or the commercial svice or whatever, you're in the service of the united states of america, promoting our values trying to help promote democracy and also trying to have economic and strategic cooperation. i thank our foreign service staff, many of them live in maryland. but that's not the point. ey live in the united states of america. and so i say to all when you
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point your finger and s we really don't need a government, i think we do need a government. and when we talk about standing up for our military now in these tough budget times, absolutely we should. but remember there are other overseas who also carry our flag in very dangerous areas. so let's start respecting the people for our -- who work for our government. let's make sure they have the right resources to do their job and then let our president, our talented secretary of the help work with the others to work with other world leaders to do someing to really bring about stability. so, madam president, i feel very strongly about this. i guess what you're hearing from senator mikulski is grief for what's happened in libya, worry
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about what's happened in cairo, tension about what continues to happen in the middle east, and then frustration about what goes on here. when after all is said and done, what is said gets done and what is said is often not very good. the world is watching us here. we're supposed to be the grtest democracy in the world. not only are we supposed to be but i believe they are. but democracy begins with us. democracy is not always something written on a piece of paper which are our founding documents. but we have to live what is wiin those founding documents. we have to, first of all, start th civility, start with respect, start with conversations among ourselves about how we can truly work together to help our country and to help our country help the for five minutes. mr. poe: thank you, madam
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speaker. yesterday was the 11th anniversary of the attack on america from 9/11 in 2001 where americans were killed and it was an act of terrorism. but yesterday americans were attacked again. in two attacks, in egypt and in libya. apparentry terrorists attacking us again on 9/11. the embassy in egypt was stormed. the american flag was brought down and a black flag was raised by those who came into the compound. in libya, the consulate was attacked, set afire and our ambassador to libya, chris stevens, was murdered. and according to the bbc hi body was brought through the streets in benghazi. the groups are individuals that committed these acts must be
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found. there's no evidence yet there was any act by either one of these two governments but by individuals or even by groups. in libya, al qaeda cousins, as i call them, claims responsibility for the murder of our u.s. ambassador. it's no coincidence that these two attacks occurred nearly at the same time and they both occurred on the anniversary of 9/11. immediately, the attackers blamed a movie that was produced as the reason, an excuse, a justification for murdering. it's never the fault of a movie. it's never the fault of the united states. it's never the fault of western culture that people are murdered in the name of somebody else's religion. it's the responsibility and it's the fault and people to be held accountable are the ones who committed these specific acts of terror against the united states. in the past, the united states
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has always held and went after those responsible for this time of conduct. in 1998 when the kenyan embassy was attacked and americans were killed, we responded. of course we responded in 9/11. we responded after the first world trade center bombing. in 1996 when 19 american soldiers were murdered in saudi arabia we responded. in fact, president bill clinton said this -- the cowards who committed this murderous act must not go unpunished. we will not rest in our efforts to find who is responsible for this outrage to pursue them and to punish them. and after 9/11, president bush made this comment -- the search is under way for those who are behind these evil acts. i've directed the full resources of our intelligent law enforcement agencies to find those responsible and bring them to justice. madam speaker, the united states must always respond to terrorists, and we must let them be reminded again and again we will respond in appropriate manner as we did in
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9/11. we must respond today and we must respond tomorrow. i'm encouraged that the president will soon address the nation on what our response will be. we must hold those personally accountable because we must let people understand that they need to leave us alone. that is what that message needs to be. we must have justice in this terrorist attack by these individuals against america because, madam speaker, justice is what we do have been killed since 1780. madam speaker, i have to say that the news that we have of the tragic death of ambassador chris stevens in benghazi, the u.s. consulate in libya, is very sad news for all of us. now the upheaval in the arab world has brought about many great things for the first time in millennia, there have been individuals who have been able to paicipate in elections.
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and make decisions. but then we get the sad and tragic news that ambassador stevens and, according to the early reports, two marines, maybe another foreign officer was killed in this tragic attack and i'd like to say that we have spent time there. we were just in libya, mr. price and i, before ambassador stevens arrived and libya has held out great promise. i'm determined, as i know mr. price is, to ensure that the promise we saw several weeks ago in libya will not be shaurd by the tragic -- shattered by the tragic death of ambassador stevens. madam speaker, i'm pleased to be joined by my dear friend and colleague, mr. price, and i'd like to yield to him at this point. mr. price: i thank my colleague for yielding. mr. dreier and i have partnered for many years and the work of the house democracy partnership
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which we and many others in this body believe in very deeply, that we need to be good colleagues, not just nationally but internationally and we need to reach out in ways that can strengthen democracy, strengthen institutions in countries that are friends of our country and we can help bring those parliaments along. that's exactly why we visited libya back in the spring. a delegation led by mr. dreier. we were there a few weeks before ambassado stevens arrived and i think it's fair to say that we were struck by the promise of libya. of course they've had 42 years of dictatorial rule. the country has been liberated. there's still major challenges. obviously security challenges as we are lening in a tragic way today, but the country is gradually being secured. elections have been held and
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parliamentary elections are on the way. so we have great pe for libya and we will be a friend to libya. we have been and we will be a friend to libya and bringing forward the promise of the arab spring. but our purpose here today so to mark this tragic loss. the sixth i believe, ambassador in u.s. history to be killed in the line of duty. our personnel is the best that the u.s. can offer. the work that they're doing is work that's in the national interest and work that is very, very valuable to libya and to us and is horrible tragedy is one that we want to mark in this house here today. mr. dreier: madam speaker, if i may simply extend condolences to the loved ones of ambassador stevens and to say that we need to ensure that those responsible for this tragic
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death are brought to justice and we need to do everything we can to continue to encourage of the devepment of the rule of law, self-determination, political pluralism and as mr. price has said, the development of democratic institutions around the world. it's a iversal right and the united states of america is the single best model for that. so our thoughts and prayers are with the loved ones of ambassador stevens and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair recognizes the gentleman from maryland, mr. hoyer, for five minutes. mr. hoyer: thank you, madam speaker. first i want to of course associate myself in the remarks of mr. price and mr. dreier who have done such terrific work in the spread of democracy but to lament the tragic loss of life and the courage displayed by our men and women in our foreign service and who are
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deployed abroad to >> that was from the house floor earlier today. the u.s. will work with the libyan government to bring justice. the administration is investigating -- a spontaneous attack. >> up until the battle of antietam, the confederates were on a roll. expectations in the self, even in the north, and abroad, were that lee would win. the third time would be the charm. he had won the peninsula
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campaign. he had won the second battle of bull run. he was invading the north and this was going to be the crushing blow. when that did not happen, i think there was a great sigh of relief in the north. reagan takes it as the sign he was -- lincoln takes it as a sign he was waiting for for the emancipation proclamation, which transforms this war and makes it now a war for freedom. for all these rita -- reasons, i think antietam stands as an important work. >> the 150th anniversary of the battle of antietam. aquas and historians take your questions on this battle. sunday, live from antietam national battlefield on c-span 3.
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>> to join us for more road to the white house coverage with president obama. he has traveled to las vegas today. we will have his remarks live for you in about 20 minutes here on c-span. tony perkins, president of the family research counter -- council, says family -- value voters will play an important role in the upcoming election. we will watch as much -- as much of this as we can until president obama live in las vegas. [applause] >> thank you very much. thank you. i appreciate that. thank you for the invitation. i want to especially thank my guests for being here with me. the co-author of our book, a
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great friend. and our good friend from texas. a great friend, thank you so much for being here. and not only is she on my team, but she is a new president for the march for life. i am so proud of the work she does. thank you for everyone being here today. i want to extend appreciation for the chef and for giving us a little taste of louisiana. if you did not enjoy it now, you will enjoy it later. [laughter] i am grateful for the opportunity to be here at the press club and speak. i used to be on the other side of this and was for a short time. i appreciate the work. they have a shaping influence on our country and part of this process. before i began, i want to
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express my appreciation for those around the world who have expressed concern for the entire frc team in the wake of the shooting that took place in our building in the last month. i am grateful to report that leo is doing well. because of his here was some midget heroism, we are safe and secure area. [applause] we are eager to have leo back on the team. about five years ago, my wife and i were celebrating our 21st wedding anniversary. she called me at the office to inform me that we were going to
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have a baby. i will tell you at the time we had four, three girls and one boy, and the first words out of my mouth were probably not the most profound. i said, "how did that happen? " i was excited. we decided we needed to tell the other children that we would have someone new in the house. we told them all into the study and we began to break the news to them. we said, soon, someone else would live and the house. they wondered which grandparent. we said, mom will have a baby. the girls were excited. they would have a little one to dress up, play with. my son, who was 8 at the time, did not say a word. he sat there stoically. he said, if it is another girl, i am out of here. [laughter] i am happy to report with the
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birth of samuel, david has unpacked and he has decided to stay. some of my non-baptist friends asked me if we named him after the beer. no, but we do call him "bud" for short. we need a moral compass if this nation is to have a future. many may have been hoping that the threats and harassment and now this attack would cause us to just leave. let me be very clear. we are not going anywhere. in fact, i would say -- [applause] i would say my team and i are more committed to our mission of advancing faith, family, and
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freedom, then we ever have been before. before i discuss the 2012 elections, the significance of this moment demands i speak about what took place in our office about four weeks ago, which the fbi is continuing to investigate as an act of domestic terrorism. i would like to mention the investigating agencies and professional and -- professional and very helpful. i am not sure the gravity of what happened or almost happened on august 15 was fully captured in the reporting immediately following the event. more importantly, i think this is a moment for all of us to understand the responsibility we have as we advocate for causes to which we are all committed. when the shooter entered our building at approximately 10:45 a.m., he placed his backpack down in front of the security
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desk. leo was temporarily manning that desk. leo thought to assist him, and the assailants reached into his backpack and pulled out a 9 millimeter pistol. in the ensuing few seconds, three rounds were fired. as the fbi has reconstructed it, the first bullet, which struck the elevator control panel in the lobby, was just a few inches above leo's head as he ducked. uck, e not remembered to deat he would have been struck right in the head. the second shot shattered leo's form. the third shot struck the base of a nearby display case. despite his serious wounds, leo continued to rush forward and wrestled the assailant to the ground, took the gun from his possession, and then summoned help from other team members.
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one of whom called the police. i would like to publicly thank the district of columbia police chief for her department's response and professionalism. she said, leo johnson is a hero as far as i'm concerned. i agree. lways involve speculation. as far as capability, there can be no doubt. the man who shot leo carried with him enough ammunition to kill half of the people in our office building that day. in addition to the 50 rounds of ammunition, the gunman carried 15 chick-fil-a sam edges, which he had purchased the day before. the purpose of those sandwiches made the gunmen's intend very clear. it was not to feed the staff. as one of the investigative
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agents told me, we'll johnson saved a lot of lives. -- leo johnson saved a lot of lives. we are thankful to the protecting hand of our lord. let me add one final detail. after leo took the pistol out of the man's hand, the assailant pleaded with him not to shoot him, san sending to the fact, it is not personal, it is your organization -- saying something to the fact, it is not personal, it is or organization. leo is it part of our organization. he told me later that, as he contemplated what to do, the lord told him not to shoot the man who had just tried to take his life. the mercy he demonstrated in moments when self preservation
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in the heat of the battle could have been justified is the same type of mercy our organization which he is a part of attempts to show every single day as we advocate on behalf of families. i would think, or at least i would hope, that we would all agree, regardless of how intense our differences may be over issues like the sanctity of life, the sacredness of marriage, the boundaries of sexual expression, the exercise of religious freedom, violence against and by anyone is unacceptable. it is shocking to me how profound the differences have become in so short a period of time. how many people in this audience would have thought this two decades back that we would be arguing over whether marriage still constitutes a covenant between a man and one woman? there are organizations like the southern poverty law center who have exploited these differences and, in the
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process, have fostered an informant of hostility by recklessly throwing labels like hate on organizations that express an opinion that is different from theirs. unfortunately, some in the media who are sympathetic to their agenda have helped them along in this process. today, we debate whether taking the lead of a child in the womb just because she is a girl should be legally permissible. we debate whether -- >> you can see the rest of this at c-span.org. we go to las vegas now, more road to the white house, with president obama. [cheers} [cheers and applause]
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>> thank you. thank you. thank you so much. could everybody please give a great round of applause for the wonderful introduction. [applause] i also want to say, it is good to see your once and next congresswoman. [applause]
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and it is so good to see all of you. i love you back. thank you. i want to begin -- [chanting "four more years"] thank you. i want to begin tonight by just saying a few words about a tough day that we had today. we -- we lost four americans last night who were killed when they were attacked at a diplomatic post in libya.
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they were serving overseas on our behalf. despite the dangers, despite the risks, to help one of the world's youngest democracies get on its feet. they were working for the values that we hold dear as americans, and as americans we stand united to, all of us, in gratitude for their service. we are mindful of their sacrifice and we want to send out our heartfelt prayer is to their loved ones who grieve today. [applause] it is a reminder that the freedoms we enjoy, sometimes even the freedoms we take for granted, they are only sustained
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because there are people like those who were killed, who were willing to stand up for those freedoms. who were willing to fight for those freedoms. and in some cases, to lay down their lives for those freedoms. tonight, let's think of them and thank them. as for the ones we lost last night, i want to assure you, we will bring the killers to justice. [applause] and we want to send a message dollar around the world to anybody who would do us harm -- a message to all around the world who would do us harm, no act of violence will shake the resolve of the united states of america. [cheers and applause]
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we will not be deterred. we will keep going. we will keep going because the world needs us. we are the one indispensable power in the world. if we are going to see security for our children and grandchildren, that means that this generation of americans has to lead. we are going to have to keep doing the work. no matter how hard it seems sometimes. that is what i want to talk to you about here today. we have got work to do overseas. we have also got to do work here at home. we have got to do some work right here in the great state of nevada. [cheers and applause] because nevada is a battleground
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state, you are aware that we have an election going on. [applause] unless you have accidentally stumbled in here looking for a convention of podiatrists, then you have been paying some attention to the election. both parties just came out with their conventions. each side made its case. now, you are facing a very big choice. our vision, what we are fighting for, the reason all of you are here today is because we believe in the basic bargain that built the largest middle-class and the strongest economy the world has ever known. [cheers and applause]
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it is a bargain that says hard work will pay off, that, if you act responsibly, you'll be rewarded. everybody gets a fair shot. everybody gets their fair share. everybody plays by the same roles, from their street -- main street to wall street, in washington d.c.. it does not matter where you come from, what you look at -- look like, what your last name is. that is what we believe in. [cheers and applause] and that basic bargain is why i ran for president in the first place, and why so many of you worked hard to get me elective. we have -- to get me elected. we have seen for a decade, too many jobs sent overseas. we have seen too many families
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struggling as costs were going up but paychecks were not going up. people racking up more debt just to pay mortgage or tuition or put gas in the car or food on the table. these misguided policies led to the biggest recession we have seen since the great depression. millions of innocent americans, especially here in nevada, have lost their jobs or homes or savings. we are still fighting to recover from that. now that i got hit harder -- nevada got hit harder, but here's the thing, i do not think the best solutions for today's challenges are old sales pitches. that is what my opponent and the other side is selling. you guys heard it. you may not have watched the convention, but if you'd did not, let me summarize. what they said was, we want to
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give you more tax cuts, the specially tilted toward the wealthy, and everything will be ok. this is their prescription for everything -- tax cuts in good times, tax cuts in bad times. tax cuts when we are at peace. tax cuts when we are at war. tax cuts to up to lose those few extra pounds. tax cuts to give your love life that extra kick. now, listen -- i have cut taxes. i cut them for 42 needed them. -- folks who needed them. [cheers and applause] we cut taxes for middle-class families. we cut taxes for small business owners. i sure do not believe that another round of tax breaks for millionaires will bring good jobs back to our shores.
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i do not believe that it will bring down our deficit. i do not think that firing teachers or kicking students out of financial aid will grow our economy. i do not think that will haul us compete when china is churning out more engineers and scientists. after all we have been through, does anybody actually believe that rolling back regulations on wall street is somehow going to help small business here in las vegas? help the lead off construction worker here in las vegas to get back to work? we tried that. we tried that for a long time. for eight years. what happened? it did not work. we are not going to try something that we know did not work, that got us into this mess in the first place. we are not going back.
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we are going forward. we're going forward. we are going forward, nev., and that is why i'm running for another term as president. -- we are going forward, nevada, and that is why i am running for another term as president. [applause] [chanting "four more years"} we do not believe that the answer to our challenges is to tell folks, you are on your own. hope you don't get sick. if you lose your home, talk locke. you are on your own. -- tough luck. you are on your own. if you cannot afford college, borrow money from your parents. we do not believe in that.
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we believe we are all on it together. if we do not believe in an economy that grows from the top down. if we believe in an economy that grows in the middle out and the bottom up, giving everybody a chance, everybody an opportunity. open up the door for people so that they can work hard and do right by their families and do right by themselves. that is what we believe. that is why i am running for a second term as president. that is why we are moving forward together, not on our own. [cheers and applause] now, some of you heard me at the convention. i will not pretend that what i am offering is the easiest task. i never said that. in 2008, i did not say it was going to be easy. as president clinton reminded you last week, it will take more than a few years to resolve challenges that have been building up over decades.
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[applause] but we have made progress. every time i meet a child whose parents tell me, you know what, she was sick but you help her get insurance. every time i meet somebody who says, you know what, we were able to refinance our home. every time i meet someone who -- a spouse who says, you promised to bring my husband or wife back from iraq. they are back now. everytime i see that happen i am reminded of the progress that we made. we have a long way to go, but let me tell you -- when we her folks save this nation is in decline, they are dead wrong. we have got the best workers in the world. [applause]
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some of them right here in las vegas. we have got the best offer -- entrepreneurs in the world, some of them right here in at las vegas. we have the best scientists, the best researchers, the best colleges, the best universities. we have this incredible diversity that uc all across the country. -- you see all across the country. people from every background, bound together by this faith that we have in this nation. there is not another country on earth that would not let the trade places with the united states. our problems can be solved and our challenges can be met. i am asking you to choose that view. i am asking you to rally around the goals i laid out at the convention, creating manufacturing jobs and new
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energy sources, improving our education system, to straighten out our deficit and turn the page and a decade of war. we can do that in the next four years. that is why i am running for president of the united states. [cheers and applause] [chanting "four more years"] now, just in case a few of you were not convinced yet, where i needed some of you to do some convincing -- let me break down exactly what i am talking about when i talk about the goals of this country. i have a plan to export more products and outsource fewer jobs. after a decade of decline, this
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country has created over half a billion -- half a million new manufacturing jobs. we brought back a dying bottle industry that is back on top of the world. -- auto industry that is back on top of the world. now we have the choice. we can keep giving tax breaks to companies shipping jobs overseas, or we can reward companies investing right here in the united states of america, hiring american workers to create good-paying jobs right here. that is what we can do. we can help factories and small businesses double exports. we can create 1 million manufacturing jobs in the next four years. we can continue the progress we made in expanding that as having a huge impact here in vegas. you can make it happen. we will make it happen. it is up to you.
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second, i have a plan to control more of our own energy. after 30 years of inaction, we raced to standards. by the middle of the next decade, your cars and trucks will go twice as far on a gallon of gas. that will save you money. we have doubled the amount of renewable energy being generated, including right here in nevada. solar panels all across the state. [applause] not only are we generating energy that we need to grow, we can also employ thousands of americans, thousands of americans for jobs building win d turbines, solar panels,a nd long-lasting battery street today, the united states is less dependent on foreign oil than any time in two decades.
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you cannot reverse that progress, or we can build off of it. we can keep investing in wind and solar and clean coal. we can harvest new biofuels. our construction workers can build homes and strategies that waste less energy and retrofit old buildings. put them back to work in a way that helps to free ourselves from dependence on foreign oil. we can develop a 100-year supply of natural gas right beneath our feet. if you choose it, we can cut our oil imports in half by 2020. we can support more than 600,000 jobs in natural gas alone. but you can also choose the alternative, to let the oil companies run our energy plants. [crowd boos [ but that is moving backwards. -- [crowd boos]
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but that is moving backwards, and what do you want to do? >> 4. >> i want to give americans what they need to compete. education was the gateway of opportunity for me. it was the gateway for michelle. it was the gateway for many of you. it is the gateway to in middle- class life. life.middle-class because of the work we did, students in nevada and across the country are paying less today. they were wasting billions of dollars on lenders -- we cut out the middleman to give money directly to students. [applause] so now you have got a choice. you can take my opponent's advice, which is to gut
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education. do not boo -- vote. [applause] or we can decide as the united states of america, no child should have a dream deferred because of an overcrowded classroom. last time i was herein vegas, we heard about a class is that had 42 kids. kids sitting on the floor. old, worn-out textbooks. no family should have to set aside a college acceptance letter because they do not have the money. no company should have to look for workers in china because they could not find the right skilled workers here at home. that is not who we are. that is not how we move forward. [applause] nevada, i am asking you to help
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recruit 100,000 matt and science teachers in the next 10 years, improved early childhood education, give 2 million workers the chance to study at community colleges to give them the skills they need for a jobs hiring right now, help to cut in half the growth of tuition costs. we can meet that goal. you can choose that future for america. not just for yourself, but for your kids and your grandkids. that is what we mean when we say you should vote. [applause] nevada, we have to reduce our deficit. that is important. but we have to do it in a way that does not stick it to the middle class. independent analysis shows that my plan for reducing the deficit would cut it by $4 trillion. i have worked with republicans in congress to cut $1 trillion worth of spending three and i'm
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willing to do more. i want to reform the tax code so it is fair and simple. [applause] but i also want to ask the wealthiest households, including my own, to pay a little bit more on income over $250,000. [applause] the same way we did when bill clinton was president. the same way we had when we created 23 million new jobs, replaced the deficit with a surplus, created a whole lot of millionaires -- that is the way we move forward. [applause] now, to be fair the other side has a plan, too. the problem is, as president clinton pointed out, they do not have any arithmetic in it. [applause] the math does not add up.
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if you think we can somehow lower our deficit by spending trillions more on new tax breaks to the wealthy, when you try to pay for $5 trillion in new tax cuts without raising taxes on middle-class families, or at $2 trillion to military spending that our joint chiefs do not say will make a safer without increasing the deficit -- you get that error message on your calculator. no amount of extra credit will make that masterwork. i refuse to ask middle-class families like yours to pay more so that millionaires and billionaires can pay less. i refuse to ask students to pay more for college so i can payless. i refuse to take children out of head start programs or remove -- take away health insurance for
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millions of americans who are poor or elderly or disabled just so if you can pay less. i do not believe in that. that is not who we are. that is not how we will grow our economy. i do not think the answer for hard work -- for those in nevada whose homes are under water is to do nothing, to let it bottomed out. my administration has helped more than 1 million responsible homeowners refinance the mortgage, and i'm running to give more the chance to refinance and save $3,000 a year and maybe start building up. that will strengthen the housing market across the board in the state. by the way, i will never turn medicare into a voucher. no american should have to spend their golden years fighting which -- insurance companies.
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he should retire with dignity and respect you have earned. we will break down the costs, and not dump the costs down to seniors. -- on seniors. we will keep the promise of social security by taking responsible steps to strengthen it. not by turning it over to wall street like a sack of poker chips. that is the choice to face this fall. that is what we mean when we talk about moving forward. now, rebuilding our economy -- as we were reminded today, our prosperity at home is lent to policies abroad. four years ago, i promise to end the war in iraq, and we did. [applause] i said we would wind down the war in afghanistan, and we are. [applause]
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the day after 9/11, we are reminded that a new tower rises above the new york skyline. al qaeda is on the path to defeat and bin laden is dead. [applause] we still face threats in this world. we have to remain vigilant. that is why we will be relentless in our pursuit of those who attacked us yesterday. that is also why as long as i am commander in chief, we will sustain the strongest military the world has ever known. [applause] when our troops come home and take off their uniforms, we will serve them as well as they served us, because nobody who fought for america should ever have to fight for a job when they come home. that is a solemn commitment that we make.
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as we are winding down these wars, we could use some of the money we are no longer spending on were to pay down our debt and put more people back to work, rebuilding homes and schools and roads. after a decade at war, it is time to do some nation-building right here in the united states. [applause] so let me say this -- let me say this. we can get all this done. i have no doubts in my mind we can get it done. the power to do it, though, is in your hands. i told you at the convention, the election four years ago was not about me. it was that you and the changes you imagine for this country. you are the reason seniors across nevada save an average of nearly 600,000 -- $600 last
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year on their medicine because of health care reform. you are the reason thousands of students at unlv have more help pay for college this year. -- paying for college this year. you are the reason to grandparents in reno could refinance their mortgage and keep the american dream. you are the reason a young immigrant who grew up here and went to school here and pledges allegiance to our flag will no longer be deported from the only country he has ever known. [cheers and applause] u.s. the reason why we ended don't ask don't tell. -- you are the reason we ended don't ask don't tell. you are the reason they can come back and hear this to amazing words, welcome home. -- those two amazing words, welcome home. that is why we cannot turn back now.
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if you buy into all the cynicism being fed to utilities negative @, -- ads, you know what, change will not happen if he stop fighting for it. you know who will fill the void -- the lobbyists, the special interests, the folks riding $10 million checks to run these negative adds. the people trying to make it harder for you to vote. politicians in washington who want to decide who you can marry, who want to decide, for women, what their health care choices should be when women are -- perfectly capable of making those decisions themselves. [applause] we cannot let that happen, nevada. we have the power to make sure it does not happen, and i need your help. we have come too far to turn
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back now. we have more good jobs to create. we have got homegrown energy to generate. we have got more young people to send to college and more good schools to fill. more teachers to hire. we have more veterans to take care of. we have more doors of opportunity to open to everybody, black, white, hispanic, asian, native american, gay, straight, anybody willing to work hard and the leads in america. we have got to open those doors of opportunity for them. if you are willing to work with me and fight for may and knock on some doors for me and make phone calls with may, if you vote in november, we will win. we will win nevada. we will win this election. we will finish what we started. again, we will remind the world
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what we are the greatest nation on earth. god bless you. god bless the united states of america. [cheers and applause] ♪ ♪ ♪
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>> more road to the white house -- republican vice-presidential candidate was at a town hall meeting in wisconsin today. he commented on the attack against the u.s. consulate in libya, and answer questions on the federal budget and government transparency. >> thanks, buddy. >how are you doing? lookit that. go packers. [applause] please, everybody have a seat. i do not want to make a stand the old time. i want to begin -- unfortunately, on a somber note.
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we woke up to some pretty disturbing news this morning. i know all americans are shocked and saddened by the news in the middle east. the attacks on a diplomatic missions in egypt and libya, the loss of four american lives, including our ambassadorincludingj. christopher stevens -- including our ambassador, j. christopeher stephens. our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and families. i would ask it this moment that we join together in a moment of silence in memory of them. thank you. this is a time for healing and a time or resolve. in the face of such a tragedy we are reminded that the world needs american leadership.
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the best guarantee of peace is american strength. [applause] we face a big decision in this country. the decisions we make our profound, and it will last not just for four years, but for a generation. the decisions and challenges we face are not just here at home, but abroad. in that spirit, i want to have a town hall meeting where we listen to you. i have had over 500 town hall meetings in wisconsin. what i have learned as a representative of wisconsin is that to be a good representative, to be any effective leader, you have to know what is going on in people's lives. you have to understand their plights and concerns. that is what matters most to me. mitt romney and i understand what is going on.
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we understand the challenges that we are facing. we understand that we can do a lot better than this. as scott mentioned, 23 million people in this country -- 23 million men and women who are struggling to find work. who are either working in a field they never trained for, below the skill sets, a temporary job, or a lot of them give up. last month alone, for everybody who found a job, before people stop looking for one. -- nearly four people stopped looking for one. this is not what an economy -- economic recovery looks like. look at the fiscal cliff that is giving some much uncertainty to business. we can do better than this. we are at that proverbial four pinero. what we -- fork in the road. what we have learned is that president obama is putting us on
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the wrong track. he has said lots of great things that were very hopeful and comforting in all of our home towns in 2008. unfortunately, the actions and the deeds did not follow the hope and the change in the words. fortunately, it is not too late to get this right. it is not too late to get the country back on track by reclaiming the principles that built this country, that made america free, that it's our economy going, that is to go back to work, that gets us back to prosperity and jobs and opportunities. [applause] all the more reason the ugly reminders this morning, turning on our tv and seeing what is going on around the world, all the more reason why we need leadership. that is why i am so proud to stand with mitt romney. this is a man who, when you look
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at the living example that he has placed in his life, a man of charity, of faith, of integrity, of accomplishments, a skill and experience -- turning around the olympics when his country called, starting businesses, turning around failing businesses, creating tens of thousands of jobs. i am proud to stand with a guy who knows, if you have a small business, you build that business. [applause] of all the times when we need executive decision making, when we do not need any more finger- pointing or blaming others or praying on the darker emotions like envy and fear and anxiety -- we need leadership. when this man was governor of massachusetts, unemployment went down, family household income
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when up. he presided over an increase in the credit rating of his state. president obama -- we had unemployment above 8% for 43 months. family household income has gone down $4,000 on average. and we had the first downgrade of the united states credit in our history, and another one is threatening to come. that is not leadership. what i would like to do is have a conversation. i want to hear from you. get your feedback, your opinions, your questions. let's have a good conversation. that is how americans fix things. talk to each other, we understand each other. that is what representative government is all about. there are a lot of people who built this country -- freedom, free enterprise, liberty, self- determination, but one that is tantamount, one that is imperative, the government works
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for us and not the other way around. [applause] that is the driving principle. let's get on with it. let's have a conversation carried [applause] . [applause] they have got folks who have microphones -- want to see a show of hands. how about the guy in the white shirt over here? >> paul, i want to thank you for accepting been a vice president. it is about the best thing that could have ever happened to america. >> thanks. >> i know how hard you work. my question is this -- whenever i talk to democrats, they say our problems are congress.
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when you to explain to the american people how the senate keeps the same budget for three years. it is about the money. it is the democrats wanted to keep the money, the fact that they do not do anything in the senate is to we should really be blaming. >> what he is talking about is -- we have a fiscal crisis. i think everybody knows that. you cannot keep borrowing and spending money we do not have. governments on average -- 40 cents of every dollar we spent is barred. we are heading towards a debt crisis. it is the most predictable economic crisis we have ever had. here is the point -- i remember 2008 and the economic crisis that ensued like it was yesterday. i remember the treasury secretary, the chairman of the reserve, coming to congress and hyperventilating -- hyperventilating about a possible crash and great
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depression. now that we look back on it, the housing bubble, look at the wall street's tough, that -- wall street stuff, that caused by surprise. here is the u.s. the question. what if, knowing it was coming -- here is how i would ask the question. what if, your president or congress and saw the price is going, c goingrisis coming, -- crisis coming -- if they knew it was debt coming? what if they knew it was going to happen? what if they could prevent it from happening and have the time to do it but just decided it was not good politics? they decided to do it because it was not good for their political future? what would you think about that? that is exactly where we are today. we see this coming.
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we see a debt crisis on the horizon. we know that if you follow what europe is doing you will get the same results. here is the problem. they called austerity. what it means in austerity -- in europe is that current seniors see their health benefits/. young people coming out of school have no opportunity. they're entering another recession. politicians and in both political parties have been making and the promises to voters to get reelected all over the world and in america. pretty soon those empty promises become the debt crisis. our job, our moral imperative, our obligation to you is to prevent that from happening. what we want to do is stop a debt crisis, and get economic growth and opportunity revived in this country and make sure that the promises that are made -- my mom was here, who has been here on medicare for 10 years --
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more than 10 years, i will not say exactly how many years more than 10 -- people were made promises. they based retirement on these promises. it is our first priority to make sure the government can keep these promises. but if we have a debt crisis, that may not be the case. our job is to make sure we can keep the promises that have been made to people. those of us who are younger, who know these programs will not be here based and where we are now, we need to make it so that we can bank on of them. the problem is that there is a fundamental lack of leadership in washington on this. the house representatives, we have lead and passed two budgets that fix this problem, that did us on a path to balancing the budget, that pay off the debt, grow the economy, and keep the promise of medicare and programs for our seniors. the president has had four chances to fix these. four budgets -- none of which
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have even bothered to try and fix this problem. never, ever balancing the budget. what is worse, even though we have a law that tells us to have to pass a budget every year -- april 15 is taxed a for all americans and budget before congress. budget by to pass the april 15, and the senate has not done it for three years. they have simply chosen not to lead and not bother passing a budget. we are still living under the 2009 obama budget. remember what we got from there. that is a fundamental lack of leadership. mitt romney will not make that mistake. when it romney asked me to join the ticket, we had a long conversation. he told me about his family and his principles. he told me about his upbringing and his life, his sense of obligation and duty. he told me about how he sees this country at a very precarious moment in history. a very dangerous work in the
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road. if we did right, we'll be ok. he said, you have the kind of experience as a reformer, attack and on these big problems, this fiscal crisis, this budget crisis. you have experienced it complements mind. join me, and i want to take this on in washington. i do not want to point fingers. i want to take this on and get this going so we can that this bullet. that is the kind of -- so we can dodge this bullet. that is what we need. we need real leadership. [applause] how about the gentleman right here? what is on your hat? i thought -- you area abronze star winner. thank you very much for your service to this country, sir. [applause] that is a very special thing.
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>> the current administration seems to have more time to play golf and listen to their national security briefings -- than listen to their national security briefings. he has more time to prepare for a comedy show them to meet the ambassador of israel when they are in this country. our ambassador has been slaughtered. to embassies overrun -- how would the romney-ryan administration do things differently? >> first of all, peace through strength works. [applause] it is very important that a president speak with a singular voice representing our principles and our values. we do not want people around the world wondering what our values are.
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we believe in individual rights. we believe in women's rights. that is very important. we believe in plurality. religious freedom. it is important that people know who we are and what we believe in and the values we will stand up for. that is point number 1. . number to -- if you show weakness, if you show moral equivocation, foreign policy adventurism among adversaries will increase. we do not want a climate where our adversaries are tempted to test us and our allies are worried about trusting us. that is unfortunately the path we are on right now. i'm really worried about that. [applause] this is my 14th year serving in congress. that means a started before 9/11. that means we have been involved and seen what we have
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done. we have a sense so many wisconsinites to battle who volunteered, who said, the up, i believe in my country. what meat -- what we must do, and this is a priority in writing the budget for our national defense, our veterans. our veterans have been made promises. we have a new clinic in green bay. we put one in southern wisconsin. it is very important we keep commitments to our veterans so we now have our back. right now, they are out there getting our back. that is very important. [applause] the last point -- i believe the president's devastating defense cuts breed weakness. the president sent us a whole new round of defense cuts in his budget this year. the only area where he seems willing to cut spending is in
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our military. he is not cutting spending in other areas, but our military. then you have this thing -- i will not get into the policy of it, but the sequester, you have another looming $500 billion cut the defense on top of $470 billion. the president has not lifted a finger to prevent that. it should not, at the expense of our fighting men and women -- it should not come at the expense of our fighting men and women. they need to have the benefits they were promised and we need to make sure we send them out to battle, they have everything they need to make themselves safe and all the people they need to make them safe. that is crucial. [applause]
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we are familiar with it here in wisconsin. osh kosh producing these great vehicles keeping our men and women say. these defense cuts not only shortchange our troops and make it harder for us to make them self -- make them safe, but they send a signal to our adversaries that we are weakening. that is a temptation many cannot resist. is there a microphone over here? we will get someone over here.
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do not worry, buddy. i want to make sure you can get it. the tall guy in the blue and white shirt. >> in 2008, obama made a lot of fiscal promises to fix the problems. you are making very large promises yourself. however, he never gave a deadline for any of the fiscal promises. do you have a deadline? i do not want to spend eight years on another risk. >> that is right. the answer is yes. [applause] and it is called a budget. we are going to have one. we are going to pass it and we are going to do it on time because there is a natural deadline in law. that is what we are doing.
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mitt romney has already put out more details, more solutions on how to get the economy turned around and the debt and deficit under control than the sitting president of the united states has. we have said here is our solution. it is not just enough for us to criticize the president -- present administration. there is plenty of room for that. but we all use solutions. we go you specifics. -- but we owe you solutions. we you specifics. this cloud of debt produces so much uncertainty on everything. you have no idea what the tax rates will be in the future or interest rates if your government keeps going on this unsustainable path.
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the answer to question is a deadline is the budget deadline. we passed it twice in the house. i will give you the quick version. number one, let's use the energy we have in this country and that great jobs. [applause] that creates prosperity. we can start by approving the keystone cop line to make sure that oil from canada does not go to china. number two, this is really important for the midwest. for where we come from. we have lost a lot of jobs. a lot of people in our communities, personal friends of mine, people i grew up with, i worked with -- they thought they
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had the same jobs for most of their lives just like their parents. in jamesville, that was the basic belief. come out of high school, make a -- have a job that makes a great living for you and your family. the problem is when those jobs go, the people who lose their jobs in these industries to not have another job that makes up for the same lost income they had. so what do you do? we have great technical colleges here. we have a great system that scott walker is improving on and making better. let's have skills that can go to the people will lose those jobs so they can go back and get the training and skills they need to get a job of the 21st century. there are some any progress in washington that need consolidating so they can actually go to the individual out of work. my worry is people in the mid
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stage of their careers. people in their 30's, 40's, 50's out looking for work or who gave up trying -- my worry is they will start giving up on life. not making their own opportunity to what they want to be. this is a critical moment. this is why you need economic growth. this is why you need to have the ability, the means to go to matc, anyone of our community colleges or universities to get the skills they need to get back into the pipeline of opportunity. number three, we make a lot of stuff here. there are more jobs per capita in manufacturing in wisconsin than any other state in the country. we make things in wisconsin. we are really proud of it. we also grow a lot of food. down in our area, beheaded bad drought. it was not so bad up here.
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-- we had a bad drought. it was not so bad appeared pretty to open foreign markets so we can sell more. 95% of the world's population is overseas. the open those markets and when other countries cheat, countries like china steel our intellectual property, we need to make sure they treat us fairly and equally because if we are on a level playing field, we will create jobs. we will have fair trade that gets us promoting things. the other thing is you have to get spending under control. by actually having and passing a budget which is the fundamental obligation of leadership. the statutory obligation of congress and the president and the moral obligation that we get this thing under control so we do not have a european debt crisis. that means you have to cut spending. we have to reform the
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entitlement programs so we can keep a promise to those in or near retirement and make sure our generation has this when we retire. when we do this, remove all that uncertainty. look at what president obama as promising. look at a failed leadership he has offered. he is promising that this january, we have a massive tax increase. but he would like you to think is that this is just a tax increase on aaron rogers or some wall street tycoon or movie star. here's the problem -- it is a huge tax increase on our successful small businesses. nine out of 10 businesses in wisconsin have filed their taxes as individual people. but the president is promising is this january, their tax rate goes above 40% federally. you saw the wisconsin income tax
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on top of that. overseas, other countries are lowering their tax rates. [applause] we compete with canada. it is healthy competition. here is the issue -- canada, like so many other countries around the world, lower their tactic on their businesses. last january, the lower their tax rate to 15% on their businesses and president obama as promising our successful small businesses -- lots of businesses have five, 10, 25, 150 people working in the business. he said their top tax rate is going above 40% when the canadians are at 15%. when we tax our job creators,
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they win, we lose. we cannot have that. all these tax increases go for more spending. at that every one of the president's promised tax increases. they do not pay for a fifth of the proposed deficit spending. this idea of taking more for businesses and families to spend in washington does not work. [applause] that is what we are going to do. that in the bombing plan for a stronger middle-class. champion small businesses. get this deficit and spending under control. make sure that our trading competitors are fair and that we can open up markets for our product to be made here and sold their. get people the skills they need when they are in the middle of life and had been knocked out and down on their luck. and make sure that with all this oil and gas, with all this new
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technology, and up with the federal government in front of it. get the federal government behind it so we can create these jobs. that will get us prosperity and economic growth and opportunity. >> my doctor says you are pretty good guy. -- my daughter says you are pretty good guy. i have a question of federal agency. it seems a week of two news stories about agencies going off to hawaii trips or las vegas. what would you do, how would you trim federal government and these agencies? how would you get them under control and stop wasting our money? >> that is a very good question. i am going to be talking to a
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young woman from appleton shortly after the suez been talking about this for a long time. she is focused on this like a laser beam. a couple of things -- did not keep warmer -- rubber stamping spending increases to these government agencies. we did have to cut spending on federal agencies. the kind of increases they have gotten over the last four years we do not forget that president obama and his party controlled all of government the first two years of his administration. domestic government bureaucracies got on average a 24% increase just in those first two years. did you get a 24% increase in your paycheck? small business revenues?
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when they waste money like this because to keep giving them all these increases, you have to cut spending. that forces people to become more efficient. you need a man spent makeover of federal agencies. of all -- you need a management makeover of federal agencies. i cannot think of a better man than mitt romney to take on the challenge because this is exactly what he excels at doing. turning around big organizations and making them more lean, mean, and efficient. you have to have the right incentive structures so federal agencies are not just try to pad their budgets. they are looking for ways to cut their budgets. you need to incentivize that. the mitt romney test is this -- is this worth borrowing more money from china to finance? if it is not, do not do it. that is the other problem we have. [applause]
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there are a lot of good management reforms that have not been tested yet. that at the federal bureaucracy in sync with the taxpayer. right now, i would argue is the opposite. otm. other people's money. when you have bureaucracies spending other people's money like it as monopoly money, they do not think about it as if it is their money. we need to reform the management system of the federal government of the way our agencies spend and the way they operate so we can see the books, compare them, and measure them based on how much more efficient they have become, how much they have done more with less than simply rubber stamping the big increases in their budget. to me, it is about how the culture of how this government agencies are run and how congress funds these agencies. and the congress, he spent all
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your times spending money. we do not spend time overseeing how the moneys being spent. he guthrie budget cycle did a season, spend, spend, then start over next year and start spending again. we have to have more oversight. it is hard-working taxpayers who are paying for all this. it is not just a generation. it is the next generation of hard working taxpayers. the debt is getting out of control. >> but in the 2008 -- in 2008, president obama said he is going to be very transparent. when you get to the white house, how transparent are you going to be?
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>> this is critical. when people go out there and say they are going to do all these things and they do not do it, you break the covenant with the people but i you elected in the first place. look at all the broken promises we have heard from president obama to date. he was going to cut the deficit in half in four years. nowhere close. if we just passed the stimulus legislation, unemployment would never get above 8%. it has been above 8% for 43 months. transparency is key but one would want to do is open the books to the federal government. the pentagon has not been able to pass an audit. that is ridiculous. to me, you need to have the kind of mess reforms you're talking about you have total transparency so that the taxpayer themselves can see where dollars are going. the other problem we have is so much redundant programs. the problem with washington is the keep adding new program
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after new program and you do not measure to see if they are working. we're talking about job training. we have over 40 different job training programs spread across more than a half dozen agencies in the federal government. we cannot even measure whether they work for a well or not. let's consolidate these things. so we can get the support of the people who need it. that is part of the problem. every -- every president comes in with these promises and the results are not there. women keep spending money we do not have, but we are borrowing -- when we keep spending money we do not have, we're borrowing too much money. if you know where your taxpayer dollars are going, if you can see what is happening in government, you are more likely to hold your congressman and
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president and senator more accountable for your money that they are spending and your children's money they are borrowing. that to me is very important. and it means budget. you need to pass a budget and hold your elected officials accountable for implementing the budget. our government has been running on autopilot for three years. if you have autocratic government, you do not have a transparent government. you have to say here is how much we're going to spend on this program. here are our priorities. and then implement it. that is not what we have had. president obama came in contact nearly every item on his agenda, including his big budget at that time, and look where we are now. occupy the government ever since then did the point is, you have
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to stop the opm mindset. it is not other people's money. you ought to see breyer money goes -- to see where your money goes. they ought to pass a budget. that is the first line of accountability when it comes to a taxpayer dollars. [applause] >> congratulations on accepting the nomination. i have a question concerning the federal reserve. but can mitt romney do and what can paul ryan do to stop qe1, qe
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2, and devaluing our dollars? [applause] >> i hate to say but -- haunted easing, the federal government creating money and buying our own bonds with debt -- which dilutes our currency at the end of the day. what is is -- what it is is our central bank tried to make up for a failed fiscal policy. they are trying to bailout the fact the president has been led -- and may have horrible economic policy coming from our regulations and tax policy. the are trying to bail it out and that is not the job of the federal reserve. today and tomorrow, the cost the federal open market committee. they are going to be discussing whether they do more of this
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money creation. what it is is the federal government creating money in one hand to buy the bonds being issued by the treasury in the other hand to try to keep interest rates low. interest rates are exceptionally low. they have been low for a long time mitt romney and i believe this will do more harm than good. the benefits of all this money creation and quantitated easing are overweight by the cost of doing so. here is what is essential for the federal reserve for our modern policy -- sound money. we need some money. we need to know that our currency is going to be reliable. that the dollars you have will buy a dollar's worth of good tomorrow and 10 years from tomorrow. when the federal government and the federal reserve engages in these kinds of policies, they have to be mindful of making sure our prices are stable. there are a lot of things the
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government can do to hurt people. one of the things government can do is to debate the debase our own currency. if we have an inflation problem, we do not have a right now but the fear with this kind of monetary policy is down the road, we will lose credibility under our currency. we will have inflation down the road. here's what happens when that happens -- you lose your purchasing power. if you are living on a fixed income, if you retire -- i just talked to a couple of retired teachers. the retired up in the bay. when they set the retirement up, my guess is they have a fixed income that they based their living standard on. they have a budget. they are in their golden years and going like theory here is what happens when you have inflationary -- their golden years and enjoying life. this inflation wiped out a
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living standard. the dollar's ups and retirement on to not by as much as you thought it would when you based your retirement on them. that is something the government and only the government can do. so it has to do it well. we need to make to the federal government, the one agency in charge of that, has to mind stability. a necessary precondition for economic growth and for people to take risks and look of that investment horizon, they need to know their money is still going to be good. the price is going to be there. i talked to a woman who takes cherries and jalapenos and makes this great jelly. she is looking to start her business back up.
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if you are going to buy a kitchen and start doing all this, you need to know that you can sell your goods and a price for you can recuperate your costs and profit. you are not going to take all this risk unless you know it is one worth taking and its currency is undermined and the government keeps printing and regulating like it is, that is a huge risk. one of the worst things hitting our economy today is uncertainty. massive tax increases looming on the horizon. huge defense cuts. looming right on our horizon in january. they have the federal reserve, of which i believe is doing more harm than good if they enter into quantitated easing around three, that produces more uncertainty. the markets are uncertain. it might show a positive affect in the near term. but not in the long term, i
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fear. what we want is a monetary policy the goal of the federal reserve to focus on sound money,, price stability. the fed takes their eye off that ball, we could of the worst of both girls. high unemployment and inflation to writ remember the dreamy carter years -- the jimmy carter years? we do not want to repeat the jimmy carter years. [applause] show of hands. i'm looking for a young lady. how about this young lady right here? what is that, a stop watch? >> no, a gift from my daug hter.
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there is a daughter and the doctor in at pakistani jail right now -- there is a doctor in a pakistani jail right now and he is rotting in a jiaail right now. this is wrong. what can you do about it? >> this was a doctor doing dna testing to find strands from the osama bin laden family. let me be careful in my words but really clear. these leaks on national security coming from the white house undermined the men and women who put risk on their lives for us. this is not helpful. [applause]
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i suppose it could have served some short-term political gain or shown some nice story but let's ask this question -- if you are a doctor in pakistan and you -- and the american government asks you to help of the future and you see that, but do you think you are going to do? are we going to get people to help us in the war on terror if this is how we treat our allies? these leaks are not helpful. productive.tner prodnter in mitt romney administration
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will not make those kind of mistakes. mitt romney administration believes in peace through strength, supporting our allies, and we have tough times ahead of us. look at what's going on with israel and iran right now. look at the danger that brings, not just out -- not just us, but the world. if we are trying to advance our national security interests and unless people of the difficult corners of this world to help us come bobby keep leaking about what they're doing, they will stop helping us. -- and we keep leaking about what they're doing, theywill stop helping us. there are a lot of people who are not from this country who believe iinto this country. you believe that a strong america as the best thing for their peace and security because we stand for democracy and freedom. these debt for the values of
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free enterprise, and of his rights, -- we stand for the ballets of free enterprise, womens rights -- if america stops doing that, they will have less support for their freedom. it is a shame this man is wafting in jail, as you say. we have to treat our allies better than this and we will. thank you, everybody. that is the last one i have time to do. thank you so much for coming out. we need your help. i really appreciate everybody. thanks so much. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012]
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>> on thursday on "washington journal,", tavis: myerlee and cornell west tavis smiley and cornel west talk about party in the u.s.. >> did you see the jobs report this morning, by the way? 95,000 net new jobs created and almost 400,000 people dropped out of the work force altogether. it is simply unimaginable pierre
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>> today, we learn that, after losing 800,000 jobs a month when i took office, we added jobs for the 30th month in a row, a total of more than 4.6 million jobs. >> watched and engage with c- span as the presidential campaigns move toward the october debates. the first is wednesday october 3 from the university of denver. they take audience questions in a town hall format from hofstra university. also, watch the vice presidential candidates' debate on thursday the 11th from danville kentucky -- and the, ky. we will look at the senate races and the control of congress. follow on c-span, c-span reo, an online at c-span.org. >> the house voted today to renew the foreign intelligence surveillance act known as fisa
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for five years. the law allows the government to conduct wireless hacking of international phone conversations. here's the house debate today on the hill. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. smith: pursuant to house resolution 773, i call up h.r. 5949, the fisa amendments act re-authorization act of 2012, as amended, and ask for its mediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 463, h.r. 5959, a bill to extend the fisa amendments act of 2008 for five years. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to house resolution 773, the amendment in the nature of a substitute recommended by the committee on the judiciary printed in the bill is adopted and the bill, as amended, is considered as read. the bill shall be debatable for e hour with 40 minutes
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equally divided and controlled by the chair and ranking minority member of the mmittee on the judiciary and 20 mutes controlled by the chair and ranking minority member of the permanent select committee on intelligence. the gentleman from texas, mr. smith, and the gentleman from michigan, mr. conyers each will control 20 minutes. the gentleman from michigan, mr. rogers, and the gentleman from maryland, mr. ruppersberger, each will control 10 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. smith: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous materials on h.r. 5959, as amended, currently under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. smith: and, mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. smith: mr. speaker, america and its allies continue to face national security threats from foreign nations, spies and terrorist organizations. our national security agencies must be able to conduct surveillance of foreign terrorists and others so we can stop them before they disable our defenses, carry out a plot against our country or kill
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innocent americans. in 1978 congress enacted the foreign intelligence surveillance act to protect for the domestic collection of foreign intelligence to protect americans' civil liberties, they made fisa courts. if the government needs to collect domestic information for national security purposes, it must first request permission from a fisa judge. this is limited to domestic information. fisa was never intended to apply to the collection of information from non-u.s. persons in foreign countries. but advances in technology over the last 40 years have changed how overseas communications are transmitted. in 2006, then director of the national intelligence, admiral mike mcconnell stated that the intelligence community was not collecting approximately 2/3 of the foreign intelligence
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information that required the government to obtain individualized fisa court orders for overseas surveillance. to solve the problem, in 2008 congress passed the fisa amendments act to reaffirm our long standing intent that a court order is not required when a non-u.s. person outsid the u.s. is targeted. the act continues the authority to collect intelligence from foreign tarts located outside the united states. the fisa amendments act both strengthens our national securi and expands civil liberties protections for all americans. the act requires an individualized court order for the government to target an american anywhere in the world. under the fisa amendments act, the government cannot conduct any surveillance overseas without authorization. the government cannot target individuals unless there is a
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reasonable belief they are not in the united states, which the government must try to ascertain. the government cannot intentionally acquire communications when the sender and recipient are both in the united states without an individualized court order from a fisa judge. the government cannot reverse target individuals overseas in order to monitor those in th united states. this means that the government cannot target a u.s. person simply by monitoring a non-u.s. person that the u.s. person is talking to. and for the first time in history, the government must obtain an individualized court order from the fisa court to target americans outside the united states. foreign surveillance, under the fisa amendments act, is subject to extensive oversight by the administration and congress. every 60 days, justice department, national security officials and the director of national intelligence conduct onsite reviews of surveillance
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conducted pursuant to the fisa amendments act. in addition, the attorney general and the director of national intelligence conduct detailed assessments of compliance with court-approved targeting and minimumization procedures and provide these reports to congress twice a year. the administration also is required to submit to the judiciary and intelligence committees a copy of any fisa court order, opinion or decision. it must also submit the other memoranda of law from national security officials within the intelligence community that relate to a significant construction or interpretation of any provision of fisa. this law willxpire at the end of this year unless court re-authorizes it. president obama has identified re-authorization of the fisa amendments act as the top legislative priority of the intelligence community and request congress to extend the law for five years. h.r. 5949 is a bipartisan piece
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of legislation to do just that, extend the fisa amendments act to december 31, 2017. foreign terrorists continue to search for new ways to attac america. foreign nations continue to spy on america to plot cyberattacks and attempt to steal sensitive infoation from our military and private sector industries. they are committed to the destruction of our country, and their methods of communication are constantly evolving. we have a solemn responsibility to ensure that the intelligence community can gather the information it needs to protect our country and protect our citizens. this bipartisan bill ensures that our country will be able to identify and prevent threats to our national security without sacrificing the civil liberties of american citizens. i urge my colleagues to join me in support of this bill and i'll reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from michigan is
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recognized. mr. conyers: mr. speaker, on our side i would begin our discussion by yielding to the distinguished soon yor member of judiciary, ranking member immigration, zoe lofgren of california, three minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from california is recognized forhree minutes. ms. lofgren: thank you, mr. chairman, and, mr. speaker, i urge this body to reject this bill. you know, the surveillance bill raises several serious constitutional and civil liberties issues that congress needs to address and has not addressed in this bill. d i'd like to discuss just one of those. congress should prohibit the federal government from inteionally searching for information on a u.s. person in a data pool emassed lawfully under section 702 of fisa, unless the searching official
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has a warrant. now, the fisa amendments act of 2008 does not make clear that the government must obtain a warrant prior to searching for information acquired incidentally on a u.s. person in a large pool of data that the government has alrdy lawfully obtained under section 702 should such a data pool happen. the informatioabout such person is subject to minimumization procedures adopted by the attorney general and must be approved by the fisa courts. but that does not explicitly inude a warrant requirement which i think the constitution requires. the prohibition of reverse targeting where the government deliberately targets a non-u.s. person for the purpose of acquiring information about the u.s. person at the other end of the line is not a substitute
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for the warrant requirement to search a database for u.s. persons should such a database be ever emassed under section 702. minimum mumization procedures are not a substitute for a warrant in such a case. now, i think that the government needs to comply with the fourth amendment to the constitution all the time. i think that the privacy for americans should not be subject to the lower standard of minimumization procedures. that's not in the constitution, and i think also thawhen we think we should trade the protections that our founding fathers devised for us in the united states constitution in the effort to provide safety were mistaken. we can be safe while still complying with the constitution of the united states. i'm mindful that we began this congress reading most of the united states constitution on the floor of this house.
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it's ironic indeed that we should be ending this congress with a bill that does violation to that very body. i thank the gentleman for yielding and i eld back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the gentleman from michigan reserves. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. smith: mr. speaker, i yield five minutes to the gentlema from california, mr. lungren, who is the chairman of the administration committee here in the house, a senior member of the judiciary committee and a former attorney general of california. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized for five minutes. mr. lungren: i thank the gentleman for yielding and, mr. speaker, i rise in support of the extension of the fisa amendments of 2008. i would just have to say this is critical to the protection of the american people. with the events of the last couple of days, we need not be reminded of the solemn responsibility. one day after the 11th anniversary of 9/11.
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if you'll recall, one of the main point made by the 9/11 commission in their after-action report was that we as a nation had not done enough -- that is the government of the united states had not done enough to connect the dots to warn us sufficiently to protect against the attack which caused the death of over 3,000 on our homeland. in order to connect the dots, that is the items of information, the intelligence, you have to have the dots, you have to have the intelligence. that's precisely what the extension of these amendments will allow us to do. but initial it's important to
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understand -- but initially it's important to understand from the outset of this debate what this legislation will do as well as what it will not do. we are seeking to address the essential need for us to monitor communications by terrorists and other foreign adversaries located outside the united states. we're not debated the patriot act here. we're not talking about national surity letters. we're not talking about those things that are directed at americans. the annual certification procedures provided under the fisa amendment a does not allow the targeting of americans outside the united states. thus if an american is targeted anywhere in the world or if a person is targeted within the united states an individualized court order is required. in cases involving a foreign terrorist outside the unid states, the reign intelligence surveillance court approves, approves annual certification submitted by the attoey general, the director of
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national intelligence. this is a court made up of article 3 judges. judges with lifetime appointments. with the independence that was accorded them under the constitution. and i would remind my colleagues that the appellate review, the appellate division of the foreign intelligence surveillance court is also comprised of article 3 judges. it is important to note we're not providing for warrantless surveillance here. inact, the fisa amendment act has enhanced the statutory protections afforded to u.s. persons under the law. because it was for the first time under these amendments that we wish to extend that require -- we required an individual fisa court order to conduct overseas intelligence collections on u.s. citizens in permanent residence. even if they're overseas, we now require that. it was not required by statute before that. before that the attorney general
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approved such collections against u.s. persons outside the u.s. pursuant to an executive order of the president. we all know the executive orders of the president can be changed by a president while in office or a succeeding president. i would submit that if you are concerned about civil liberties and i assume everybody in this debate is, returning to the gold old days prior to the enact of the fisa amendments act is not a step forward for civil liberties. it should also be understood that we are not seeking to extend the underlying foreign intelligence surveillance act in its entirety. today we're attempting to achieve the rather modest purpose of the 2008 amendments. again, court approval of annual certification by the d.n.i., the director of naonal intelligence, and the attorney general, identifying categories of foreign intelligence agents outside the united states is required. an individualized court order is required in other cases. the legislative history of fisa is instructive.
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the house permanent select committee on intelgence report that accompanied fisa in the initial act in 1978 clearly expressed congress' intent to exclude overseas intelligence activities from the reach of fisa. these were words of that report. the committee's explored the feasibility of broadening this legislation to apply overseas, but has concluded that certain problems and unique characteristics involved in overseas surveillance preclude the simple extension of this bill to overseas surveillance. in other words, overseas surveillance was never the focus of the 1978 act. rather it focused on domestic surveillance of persons located within the united states, to ensure that there were protections in that regard. the fisa amendment act -- mr. smith: i yield the gentleman an additional minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. lungren: the fisa amendments act under consideration today is in cases where the american is a
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target no mat where are they may be located. here's the reason why this is important. is the change in communications, the nature of communications, that requires us to do the amendments. if we fail to pass this, we will, as former d.n. director mcconnell stated, we will lose 2/3 of those dots, those bits of information, the intelligence that we need to connect to protect us. we will put in very much manner the country at risk. if you look at a simple ri analysis, you have to do threat, you have to do vulnerable, you have to do consequence. we can figure out what the vulnerability is by our inspection of our own resources in infrastructure. we can figure out what the consequences are. what we have to have in order to figure ot the threat is a means of collecting intelligence. we have to pass this law. a bipartisan law. i recall being here and having
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the former speaker of the house spend seven minutes arguing on behalf of this. and the gentleman who is nber two on the democratic side as well. it has never been partisan. hopefully we can have a bipartisan support expressed in the vote for these amendments. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman fromexas reserves. the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. conaway: mr. speaker, i -- mr. conyers: mr. speaker, i yield myself 15 seconds. to let my distinguished colleague and friend from california know that we're in complete agreement with most of what he said except that all we want to do is limit this to a three-year measure instead of five years. now there's a compromise you cat turn away from. and at this point i would yield, sir, to the distinguished senior member from jiciary committee, jerry nadler, i yield three minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for
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three minutes. mr. nadler: i thank the gentleman. mr. speaker, i rise in opposition to the fisa amendments act of 2012. if we had had an opportunity to evaluate this law based on experience with it, and to consider some amendments and alternatives, this opposition would not be necessary. but the republican majority has once again told the members of this house and the american people that it's my way or the highway. ile it's certainly appropriate for our government to gather foreign intelligence and while some degree is secrecy is necessary, it's also vital in a ee society that we limit government, protect the constitutional rights of americans here and abroad, and limit warrantless spying to genuine foreign intelligence. unfortunately we have seen repeatedly how even the very minimal restraints congress put on fisa have been violated. we should address those abuses. congress has an obligation to exert more control over spy agencies than simply to give them a blank check for another five years. the gentleman from michigan, mr.
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conyers, had a amendment that would have shortened the sunset by two years. but we won't even have a chance to consider it. perhaps because some of our republican colleagues might also want to support such an amendment. as a result we will not revisit the law until after the end of the next predential term. and if we had cut shorter this extension, we could do what we should have done but haven't. hold hearings, look into how the law is operating and decide what amendments and protections are necessary to make sure it operates right so that we can collect the intelligence without violating the constitutional rights of americans. i had an amendment that would have required the attorney general to make publicly available a summary of each decision of the fisa court d the fisa court of review that includes a significant construction of section 702 which allows warrantless surveillance with appropriate security redactions in editing. many american citizens and others who have nothing to do with foreign intelligence gathing e caught up in this
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surveillance and government has an obligation to protect their rights. the fisa court is supposed to do that and we need to ensure that the law and the courts are working. disclosure of classified information is not needed to know whether the court performs meaningful oversight of the executive branch, applies minimization standards correctly and whether or not we ought to amend the law. the gentleman from wisconsin, mr. sensenbrenner, said, quote, instead of playing the numbers game either with the actual targets or the people who are incidentally survey veiled, perhaps decision -- surveiled, perhaps decisions of the fisa court, particularly a review of the fisa court apopriately redacted could give us the answer to that question. i have always been one that favors disclosure, closed quote. the gentleman from wisconsin is right. if the fisa court is just a rubber stamp of the executive branch, we and the public should know that. and if the court really does provide meaningful oversight and meaningful limitations on the executive branch, we and the public should know that too. but we won't get to discover that or to debate.
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that failure to do so is a dereliction of our constitutional duty to protect the constitutional rights of american citizens and the betrayal of our liberties. i urge my colleagues to row ject this legislation -- reject this legislation and demand that we properly consider this very important issue by a somewhat shorter extension and by proper hearings and examination of the limitations and the workings of this law. i thank the gentleman and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from michigan reserves. the gentleman om texas is recognized. mr. smith: m speaker, i yield one minute to the gentleman from california, mr. mcclintock. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized for one minute. mr. mcclintock: i want to thank the chairman for yielding to a contrary point of view. mr. speaker, fisa allows the government to target foreign nationals and intercept their commications even with american citizens without a warrant that's required by the fourth amendment. we'rtold, don't worry, the law requires that any irrelevant information collected in this manner be disregarded. well, here's the problem. the enforcement of this
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provision is itself shrouded in secrecy. making the potential for abuse substantl and any remedy unlikely. secret courts and warrantless surveillance are not compatible with the free society or the english common law or the american constitution. now, we're told fisa's necessary to stop terrorist plots. and that this protection trumps privacy or due process concerns. well, ben franklin answered that argument years ago when he warned us that those who can give up essential liberty to obtain a littleemporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. in fact, america's security is far better assured as a thriving free society in a world that rments her strength and fears her justice vengeance. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from texas reserves. the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. conyers: mr. speaker, i yield myself 20 seconds to commend the gentleman from
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california's statement in this regard. and i also point out that on the subject of transparency, two senators, one from oregon, the other from colorado, asked the director of national intelligence how many americans are affected by this law. 10 more seconds. the answer, we don't know. now, we don't know if he meant that he didn't want to tell us any new or that he honestly didn't know. either way, the response is inadequate. now, mr. speaker, i'm pleased to yield to the distinguished the gentlelady from houston, texas, ms. sheila jackson lee, and i will yield her three minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the
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gentlelady from texas is recognized for three minutes. ms. jackson lee: thank you, mr. chairman. and to mr. speaker, i'm delighted to join the chairman of the full committee and the ranking member of the full committee in this vigorous debate on the constitution. but i'm also delighted that the ranking meer has indicated by his reference to the previous speaker that this is a bipartisan challenge and question about the re-authorization. this does not have a partisan place. it does have a place in the constitution. and as i do this, might i take just amoment, mr. chairman, and ranking member, just to acknowledge the loss of our americans who fell in libya, the ambassador stevens and those who were securing him. it is a recognition that we live in a difficult world. but one of the distinctive aspects of america is that we live in a free country. that we are willing to accept the distinctions and differences of all people and we respect the privacy and the fourth amendment. so i might refresh my fellow colleagues as to what fisa does from the very beginning.
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it is electronic surveilance, physical searches, the installation and use of pin registers and trace devices, and demand for the production of physical items. although fisa's design for intelligence gathering and not for the collection of criminal evidence, the law applies to activities to which a fourth amendment warrant requiremet would apply if they were conducted in a criminal investigation. members need to understand there are questions of the fourth amendment right here. so what those of us who have a concern on this re-authorization are asking for, simple premise. we want to join with congressman conyers and his simple amendment that allow for greater congressional oversight and the prection of the fourth amendment as it relates to americans by shortening the re-authorization to 2015 from 2017. it intrudes the congress properly in oversight. in addition there should be no transparency in the surveillance program such as requiring the creation of unclassified versions of the intelligence
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assessments of the surveillance program. requiring the creation of unclassified summary. and i introduced an amendment, a simple amendment, we all have respect for the inspector general's office. that is one independent force in our agency that most members of congress will not challenge. my amendment indicated that we would -- or i wanted to require reports by the inspector general of the department of justice and the inspector generaof the intelligence community on the implementati of the surveillance program undethe fisa amendmes act of 2008. now let me try to find out what are the horrifically liberal groups that are concerned about this? what about the american library association? the association of research libraries, the very well-respected center for justice and the center for democracy and technology, the opengovernment.org. what we are simply saying today, and we hope our colleagues will listen on both sides of the aisle, yes, we can re-authorize this legislation, but, no, we
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cannot abdicate the questions of congressional oversight. today we had a hearing on the abuse power. the only issue in abuse of power is whether or not we respect the three branches of government. that is the argument we're making today. do you respect the three branches of government, the people's house, who represent the people, who by themselves cannot defend themselves against this extensive re-authorization. so i ask -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for 30 additional seconds. ms. jackson lee: in the course of this particular legislation, we had to con tends with such things as warrantless wiretapping, which again, as i indicated, the need for intruding of the congress is a respect of the liberties of which we want to protect. and so i would ask my colleagues to yield to transparency, yield to a shter extension, make this bill stand on its own two feet. while we mourn those who have fallen, we respect this is a free country.
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today we're not acting on that freedom by giving us the congressional oversight that is necessary. i ask my colleagues to reject the present formf this bill. i beg the senate to look more readily at a shorter extension and moreransparency. with that i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from michigan reserves. the gentleman from texas. mr. smith: mr. speaker, i yield four minutes to the gentleman from south carolina, mr. doudy, a particula member of the judiciary committee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from south carolina is recognized for four minutes. mr. gowdy: i want to thank you for your leadership on the judiciary committee. also, mr. speaker, this week has provided tragic reminders that the world is a dangerous place. we are target, mr. speaker, even from people we have helped in the pacific northwest, with lethal consequences -- in the past with lethal consequences because we had tolerance. even among those r whom we
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disagree. mr. speaker, each of us is asked when we go back home to our districts, can congress agree on anything? is there anythin that rises above politics any more? and many of us would like to answer, yes, mr. speaker, we'd like to tell the people we work for that, yes, on the issues of national security and protecting this country, yes, we can come together. we're capable of putting down talking points and red harings and straw arguments and picking up something called responsibility. mr. speaker, to say that this re-authorization has bipartisan support is an understatement. this bill passed unanimously in the house intelligence committee. and for those in shock back home, mr. speaker, i'm going to repeat this. this bill passed unanimously. all democrats, all republicans on the house intelligence committee with access to the most amount of information, not a single no vote.
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president bush supported this, mr. speaker. >> if the gentleman will yield? mr. gowdy: i will when i'm through. president obama supports this. law enforcement officials support it. our colleagues, mr. speaker, who served in the f.b.i. and federal prosecutors and in the military, they support it. the democrat-led house passed this bill in 2008 with former speaker pelosi giving a glowing speech extolling the virtues of the underlying bill and excourting her colleagues about the necessity of passing it. and all of this happened, mr. speake, because intelligence is the lifeblood of our ability to defend ourselves. it happened, mr. speaker, because this bill has nothing to do with americans on american soil.
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it happened in the past, mr. speaker. because this provides protections for americans who are traveling abroad. it passed because there is ample oversight. it passed because it has the needed checks and balances between the legislative branch and the executivbranch and the judicial branch. so why the opposition, mr. speaker? how can you explain supporting something when ms. pelosi had the gavel but you can't support it when mr. boehner has the gavel? and what i want too, mr. speaker, just for today, just r today is let's put down the red herrings and the straw arguments and the misrepresentations. this bill doesn't implicate the bill of rights any more than it implicates any other part of our constitution unless you think foreign nationals who are on foreign landfall within the protections of the united states constitution and that is
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an absurd argument, mr. speaker. the foreign nationals on foreign nd, do they have the right to vote? do they assert states' rights under the 10th amendment? can they claim cruel and unusual punishment? you go to iran, if you're an iranian, you go to iran and you assert your fifth amendment right to miranda anright to counsel and see what happens. mr. speaker, i'm almost out of time. but i do want to say this and i'm going to say this from the bottom of my heart, what's left of it having been a prosecutor for 16 years, but i want to say this. on tuesday, mr. speaker, and i believe you were with us -- mr. smith: i yield the ntleman an additional minute. mr. gowdy: i believe all of us were on the steps of the capitol and we came together to remember 9/11 and what we lost
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and what we still grieve for as a nation and, mr. speaker, what we found as a nation in the aftermath of 9/11 and republicans stood with democrats on this, the steps of the people's house and conservatives, stood with progressives, with moderates and libertarians, we were just americans. and that was enough on tuesday. we were united. we're just americans. even for just one fleeting moment in our desire to honor, protect and defend. if we can come together, mr. spear, to remember 9/11, surely we can come together to prevent another one. and i would ask my colleagues to support this bill. yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. conyers: thank you, mr. speaker. no one respects the geleman from south carolina more than i
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do, but i should advise him that it is incorrect to say that members of the intelligence committee didn't support my amendment to shorten the sunset period. have the names of two of them in front of me right now. and i also uld advise him that the authority unquestionableably affects united states persons, citizens on american soil that their communications are regularly intercepted. and that would i think allow him to join in with some of the rationale for the resistance to this measure as it appears right now. and so it's in that spirit that i point out to him that the lack of transparency, no over
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sight, the length of the measure is too long and this is being brought up under a closed rule was part of our objections and i think they were in good faith. mr. speaker, i now turn to the gentleman from georgia, a distinguished member of the judiciary committee, the gentleman from georgia, mr. johnson, and i'd like to recognize him for two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from georgia is recognized for two minutes. mr. johnson:hank you, mr. ranking member. mr. speaker, i rise in opposition to h.r. 5949 which without benefit of one oversit hearing by the full judiciary committee during the 112th congress would for five long years re-authorize
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expiring provisions of the foreign intelligence surveillance act without important modifications that are necessary to safeguard the civil liberties and the privacy rights of american citizens. although h.r. 5949 is designed to defend the united states againstnternational terrorism and other threats, it has been reported that fisa has resulted in the illegal surveillance of untold numbers of american citizens through data accumulation, also known as overcollection of voice and data communications. overcollection occurs when the voice and data of american citizens is collected incidentally to the collection of communications of foreigners. what happens to the data and voice communications of americans that is incidentally collected without a warrant, what happens tot? what happens to the private
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voice and data of americans when it's minimized? these are critical questions and they deserve critical answer but as i said, we have not had one oversight hearing in the full judiciary committee on this issue. we just simply had a markup of this re-authorization bill. these and other questions deserve answers. the fourth amendment would ordinarily protect the communications of american citizens. it prohibits ureasonable and warrantless searches and seize years of the american citizens including warrantless ease dropping and snooping. but under h.r. 5949 no warrant or showing of probation exist where information is er-- probable cause where information is -- in "the new york times" it says -- 30
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seconds? mr. conyers: 30 seconds. mr. johnson: in 2009 "the new york times" described overcollection as significant and systemic. any counterterrorism measure must have a solid constitutional footing and respect the privacy and civil liberties of american citizens. for that reason i urge my colleagues to vote against this five-year re-authorization and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from michigan reserves. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. smith: mr. speaker, we're prepared to close on our side. mr. conyers: mr. speaker, i'm pleased now to recognize my good friend from ohio, dennis kucinich, for a period of three minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from ohio is recognized for three minutes. mr. kucinich: thank you very much, mr. conyers, and to my friends on the other side of the aisle who have expressed passion about passing this,
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you're good americans. i respect your position. i rpectfully disagree. we have to defend our country from attacks from outside. i voted, along with other members of this congress right after 9/11 for the united ates to defend itself. but it's equally important that we not lose our freedoms and our constitutional protections while engaged in our defense. and we take an oath not only to defend the constitution but we ve to keep in mind that that oath and that constitution is really part of america's first line of defense. you know, i think of what it's like to make a phone call, any one of us now, we make a phone call, even from this capitol, call a friend overseas. start talk about matters relating to what's happening in america, what's happening in the world. the way this law is written without changes, those phone
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calls could be intercepted. they could not only be intercepted, but they can be downloaded, stored for future years by the federal government. i have aroblem with that. and it's a great concern. what happens is that everyone then becomes suspect when big brother's listening. now, this -- you see, i don't ink that government should have the right to listen into people's phone calls unless there's a warrant. they need probable cause. that's what the fourth amendment is about. this bill doesn't have those protections. it extends government's authority to conduct surveillance of persons reasonably believed to be outside the united states for five years and there's a blanket extension which is an advocation of congress' constitutional obligation to protect and defend the constitution. and to protect the civil liberties of all americans. now, given the information we know about our government's
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pastbuse of surveillance authorities to pass this bill without any changes, to ensure adequate council oversight and transparency, we're losing an opportunity. since e fisa amendment act passed in 2008, the government released very little information on how it uses the powers granted under this act. as the electronic frontier foundation recently pointed out, nobody in the government is willing to answer questions about how many americans -- americans' phone calls or emails have been or are being collected and read without a warrant under the authority of the fisa amendment act. so big brother is not accountable. even more disturbing is that it's well-known that the government has violated the fisa amendments act despite the broad surveillance authorities it provides the government. a freedom of information request by the aclu revealed that violations of the fisa amendment act and the constitution continue to occur on a regular basis until at
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least march, 2010. and according to the aclu, the law is written so broadly that a phone call by a u.s. citizen to someone overseas discussing general -- half a minute? mr. conyers: 30 seconds. mr. kucinich: to a phone call to someone overseas discussing general foreign affairs could be listened in on. section 702 of this act allows the government to intercept a communication of any u.s. citizen absence probable cause, a subversion of the fourth amendment right. so big brother is listening. there's no doubt that congress is advocating its responsibility when they pass a blanketxtension of this bill without knowing how many people are affected or the government's interpretation of the law. without minimum transparency, an extension should be rejected. big brother's not accountable. let's fote againstig brother. let's vote to protect the fourth amendment. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired.
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the gentleman from michigan. mr. conyers: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to include my statement in the record and i yield the remaining time to my friend from oregon, earl blumenauer. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman from oregon is recognized for three minutes. mr. blumenauer: i thank mr. conyers for his courtesy. for over a decade, i have deeply been concerned about the potential overreach of wiretapping legislation and efforts at the n.s.a. i voted repeatedly in the past to -- against unreasonable expansion of any administration's ability to intrude in the lives of unknowing and innocent americans. and i will do so again today. i remain confident that the dedicated members of the intelligence community do not need to erode the rights of
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americans in order torotect them. any apparent gains in security that may be achieved are modest and more than outweighed by longer term potential loss of civil liberties and oversight. the sense of security that each american deserves. i'm troubled by the implications for our fourth amendments rights. the absence of meaningful court review and the risk to american liberties that stem from the fisa amendments act. frankly i see no reason to rush into voting on a bill so deficient. the american people would be better served if we continued the debate and the examination, had thorough answers from n.s.a., and took up re-authorization based on a more complete review and process. in fact, i think as we stand here today on the floor, not even the n.s.a. knows the extent
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to which fisa amendment acts may potentially have been abuse the right approach would be refining this bill and more broadly taking a closer look at what over the last decade has become an intelligence community that is frankly, some feel, growing out of control. it's been over 11 years since 9/11. we ought to be able to get this rit. we shouldn't be rushed into doing something that has significant long-term implications for every american. take a deep breath and take a step back. there are over 4.2 million americans who hold a security clearance. that's more than the entire state of oregon's population. and let's throw in the city of seattle for good measure. and almost half of them hold top
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secret security clearance. more than people who reside in maine or idaho. when you've got those millions of people, you have an entity that is cumbersome and potential for abuse and frankly potential to be infiltrated or mistakes. think about it. 9/11 occurred in part not because we didn't have information. remember the memo on bush's desk warning of a potential attack from bin laden? what we are doing at the same time we're eroding american rights, we're piling on more and more and more information and it's going to be extraordinarily difficult to sort through. we risk -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired.
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the gentleman will suspend. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. smith: i yield myself the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. smith: mr. speaker, the vote we cast on the fisa amendments act tonight will be one of the most important votes we cast in this congress. and it is appropriate we do so during the week of 9/11. the fisa amendments act will continue to allow us to conduct surveillance of terrorists, spies and others who would do us harm. the fisa court order is required if a target is a u.s. citizen but not if the individual is outside of the united states and not a u.s. citizen. the fisa amendments act was first passed in 2008 overwhelmingly and expires at the end of december. this bill ex tends the law for five years. the fisa amendments act is a top priority of the intelligence community. it was support by the bush administration in 2008 and is strongly endorsed by the obama administration now.
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thises -- this is a bipartisan bill then ables us to both neutralize threats to our national security and protect the civil liberties of american citizens. i urge my colleagues to support this bill and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentman yields back.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recoized. >> thank you, mr. speaker. pursuant to the rule i claim the general debate time allocated for the permanent select committee on intelligence. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. >> mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i might consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. >> mr. speaker, i rise tay in support of h.r. 5949 which would re-authorize the fipse, the
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foreign intelligence surveillance acts, amendments act of 2008, or f.a.a., as we refer to it, for five years. f.a.a. is currently scheduled to expire at the end of the year. mr. rogers: if that happens the government will lose a critical tool from protecting americans against foreign threats, including terrorists, and as a result will lose significant intelligence on these foreign targets. i want to emphasize, mr. speaker, foreign targets. we are all reminded yesterday while looking back on the horrible events of 9/11 of the threat that we face from those seeking do us harm. let me reassure you that even though we've been able to disrupt numerous plots over the years, our enemies want to do just as much harm today as they did then and they just want to do it as badly as they did even 11 years ago. the original f.a.a. at is being re-authorized was sponsored by representative reyes in 2008. my democrat predecessor was chairman of the intelligence
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committee. and also reflected the hard work of then leader hoyer to help develop the final product under the previous majority. i've been pleased to work in a collegial, bipartisan manner with my ranking member, mr. ruppersberger, on this clean re-authorization bill. in fact, the telligence committee reported this bill out unanimously which doesn't happen all that much around this place. the administration has also indicated to us that re-authorizing the f.a.a. is its highest national security legislation priority and on tuesday issued a statement strongly supporting this bill. i hope we can all recognize this is a -- an issue that's being driven by our national security needs and not by politics. a few key points on the f.a.a. first, if we let this authority expire, we will lose a critical intelligence collection tool against foreigners on foreign soil. if that happens we lose information on the plan and identities of terrorists, information about the
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functioning of terrorist groups like al qaeda and others, information on the intentions and capabilities of weapons proliferators, information on potential cyberthreats to the united states and other critical intelligence about foreign adversaries that threaten the united states of america. second, it is important to remember that this authority is focused on allowing the government to conduct intelligence collection targeting foreigners located outside of the united states. i'm going to say that again, mr. speaker. targeting foreigners located outside of the united states. and not on americans located in the united states or anywhere else in the world. third, the f.a.a. is subject to a robust oversight structure including congress. and i can assure you that the intelligence committee takes this responsibility extremely seriously. we he had numerous hearings, member briefings, staff briefings since the pass afpblg f.a.a. in 2008. before -- passage of f.a.a. in 2008. before the government can collect any intelligence under
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the fisa amendments act, a federal judge must approve the government's surveillance process, including the targeting and minimization procedures required under the law. one final point, in addition to the primary authority in f.a.a. to target foreigners located abroad, it actually enhanced the civil liberties protection for americans by requiring a court order to target an american for collection outsidef the united states. before 2008 the government only needed the attorney general for approval. if this law expires, so do these enhanced civil liberties protections. mr. speaker, contrary to at some may say, f.a.a. is not about domestic surveillance. and it does not autrize a sweeping dragnet of collections -- of collecting on american communications. this is about foreigners on foreign soil. it is about giving our intelligence professionals the tools they need to quickly and effectively intercept the communications of those outside
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the united states who seek to do us harm. let's not forget the nature of the threat that almost 11 years ago to the day took so many lives in such a horrific way. and the examples that we see just yesterday of the ongoing target of u.s. civilians if they're in the united states or they're in places like libya continues to be a threat to the personal safety of those we ask to stand in harm's way and protect and promote the values of the united states. this is a critical piece of legislation. supported by both parties, the president of the united stes. mr. speaker, i would urge all of our colleagues here to stand united in the defense of the united states and support h.r. 5949 and i would reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from maryland is recognized. >> mr. speaker, i yield myself as much time as i may consume. i rise today in favor of the fisa amendments act which is due to expire at the end of this year. mr. ruppersberger: when chairman rogers and i took over the
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leadership of the house permanent select committee on intelligence, we made a commitment to work together, to ensure the intelligence community has the authorities it needs to effectively protect our country while also protecting the privacy of americans. i believe we must re-authorize this critical piece of legislation to keep america and her citizens safe. the fisa amendments act allows thgovernment to gain importa intelligence about terrorists, cyberthreats, weapons of mass destruction and nuclear weapons that threaten america's and u.s. interests. there's a misconception out there that this act permits the surveillance of americans without a court order. the bill prohibits, the bill prohibits the targeting of american citizens without a court order. no matter where they're located in the world. the fisa amendments act gives the u.s. government the authority to collect intelligence information about foreigners located outside of the united states. the fisa amendments act is subject to aggressive oversight by congress and the executive branch.
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there was an issue in the hearing before the judiciary hearing about the issue of oversight. in this congress alone, the house intellence committee has held multiple hearings, breechings and more than a dozen meetings concerning fisa. in addition, every 60 days the department of juste and the director of national intelligence conduct detailed onsite reviews to ensure compliance with the provisions of the act. this is a bipartisan bill that passed out of the house intelligence committee by the unanimous vote of 17-0. i understand some democrats would like a three-year extension of the fisa amendments act. some republicans requested a nine-year extension. the administration asked for a five-year extension to take the presidential year politics out of the process while also providing consistency to the intelligence community. i support the president's request for a five-year extension. without re-authorization of this crit -- re-authorization, this critical tool would be lost, putting our nation at severe risk.
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we would not be able to obtain the foreign intelligence necessary to prevent terrost plots and cut off their sources of financial support. i believe the fisa amendments act is critical to protecting our nation while protecting our americans' constitutional rights d privacy. i urge my colleagues to support this measure. thank you and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from michigan. mr. rogers: i continue to reserve. the speaker pro teore: the gentleman reserves. mr. rogers: can i yield two minutes to the gentleman from california. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. >> i thank the gentleman for yielding to me i'm one of those democrats that the ranking member talked about that would prefer a three-year extension of this measure but i'm going to vote for h.r. 5949, the fisa
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amendments act re-authorization bill of 2012, also known as the f.a.a. i support this legislation because it protects our security, preserves our freedom and has proven to respect our civil liberties in the process. in 2008, many of us were rightly concerned about this program being created and used as a back door forcollecting information on law-abiding americans. i voted against the f.a.a. in 2008, in part because of these civil libert concerns. however, as a member of the house intelligence committee, i believe the abuses that we feared have just not materialized. but let me be clear. in this and future -- -- and this and fure administrations are being given fair warning. my committee will continue to receive reports on fisa
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information collection. these reports must continue to be detailed and specific. if there are any ases or problems stemming from the application of this program, i'm certain that this congress will move swiftly to correct them. mr. thompson: so far the application of f.a.a. has gained our trust but we will continue to verify how the f.a.a. is being used. trust, but verify. e famplet a. -- the f.a.a. provides the tweels need to collect vital counterterrorism information. i will vote in favor of h.r. 5949, the fisa amendments act and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: te gentleman yields back. the gentleman from michigan reserves. the gentleman reserves his time. the gentleman from maryland is recognized. >> i yield the gentlelady from illinois, ms. schakowsky, one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for one minute.
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ms. schakowsky: i rise today in opposition to this fisa legislation. i do want to thank my ranking member for yielding to me, despite our difference of opinion. as a member of the intelligence committee, i take the threat of terrorism very seriously. but i believe we are fully capable of protecting our security and safeguarding our preciousivil liberties. this law thofferses the government to collect mass electronic communications coming into and out of the united states as long as no person in the united states is tentionally targeted. yet in april of 2009, "the new york times" reported that the national security agency collected emails from americans at a much greater rate than report. shouldn't we at least be able
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to consider an amendment to re-examine this law in 2013? but no amendments are allowed today. i urge a no vote and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expire the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. rogers: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. it's important to remember that the due process protections of the united states are alive and well here. this is one of those programs that has an inordinate amount of oversight to make sure we are not targeting americans. not only does the committee participate, the department of justice has a separate review. there are strong internal reviews. in the odd case where an american is intercepted, there are very strict procedures on how to destroy that information and correct that problem. and it has not happened hardly, frequently, at all, is the good news which is why i think there is such bipartisan, strong support of our effort, again, to collect on foreigners who are in -- outside of the united
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states. incredibly important. so i would yield the -- continue to reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland. >> i yield the gentleman from california, mr. schiff, a minute and a half. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for a minute and a half. mr. schiff: i rise in support of the fisa amendments act re-authorization. this bill re-authorizes intelligence gathering capabilities essential to our national security while also protecting the civil liberties of americans. the recent events in libya, egypt and elsewhere should serve to remind us all that there are forces around the world that are determined to kill americans, injure our interests and jeopardize our freedoms. the f.a.a. allows us to obtain critical information about terrorist organizations, nuclear proliferation and a ho of other dangers. these authorities have produced intelligence that's vital to defending the nation against international terrorism d other threats which is why attorney general holder and
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d.n.i. clapper have called re-authorizing the f.a.a. their top legislative priority. this bill does not authorize spying on americans. to the contrary, the 2008 fisa a act ensured that no american, whether within the united states or overseas, would come under surveillance witut a court order and finding of proximate cause. the authorities provided are far ohly tailored to the pup of protecting the united states from those whoould harm us. i urge an aye vote and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: e gentleman from m.d. reserves. -- from maryland reserves this egentleman from michigan is recognized. >> i have no further speakers. i'm going to continue to reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland. mr. rogers: how much time do we have? the speaker pro tempore: the gentlemafrom maryland has five minutes remaining and the gentleman from michigan has two minutes remaining. mr. rogers: mr. speaker, there's been talk about the
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fisa amendments act as a book door -- as a back door collection on americans, this is not the case. we care about america and the constitution and our civil libert the fisa a of 2008 expanded protections of american civil liberties and privacy interests. before the fisa amendments act in 2008 which became law then, the government needed only attorney general's authorization to target an american. because of the fisa amendments act if the government allows for sur slay rans of an american, that american must be overseas and the government must have a fisa court order if they do target an american. anywhere in the world. civil liberties of americans are better protected than before this act became law in 2008. also, as far as oversight, there have been allegations of not proper oversight. i understand the argument and i don't disagree with the argument about sunset. sunsets are good because they hold us accountable we can see if there are abuse
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and deal with them when we have sunset. however, the department of justice and the director of national intelligence brought semiannual reports to congress as it relates to fisa. these include reports on targeting and the parties we're focused on. the intelligence committee staff conducted dozens of meetings about the authorities urn the fisa amendments. these mettings -- meetings have addressed compliance procedures authorities and specific collections. on the intelligence committee, we review, investigate, and deba the fisa amendments act. we maintain an ongoing dialogue with the intelligence community to be sure the law is implemented how it was intended. we as americans need to know more about the threats that are out there our threats for cyberattacks are occurring as we speak right now. it's very dangerous. these attacks can affect our nationalecurity, our gride
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system, our banking systems, our air traffic control systems. and this bill, this amendment, is part of our protection in dealing with those major issues. now, i still reserve my time bui'm ready to close, mr. chairman. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland reserves. the gentleman from michigan. mr. rogers: i reserve for the right to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan. mr. runners perger: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the fisa act is the result of decades of work to modify the law so we can adapt with changing technology and evolving national security threats. the bill demonstrates what democrats and republicans can do when we work together in a bipartisan way. mr. ruppersberger: it is uniquely important to put bipartisan shshes aside. we all have the same goal of keepin america safe from terrorist threats, whether on
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land, by sea, in the air or with cyberspace. we also believe strongly in the nstitution and the protections ganted by our founding fathers. the fisa amendments act is an important tool that successfully prevented attacks on american soil. i commend everyone with who participated in this evert, especially the bipartisan leadership of chairman rogers -- rogers and the other mens of the intelligence committee on both sides of the aisle. i support this straight authorization which president obama, our commander in chief, said is rye tall to protect our nation. i will vote for the fisa re-authorizationct of 2012 and urge my colleagues to do the same. thank you and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. rogers: thank you, mr. speaker. i want to thank my ranking member, mr. ruppersberger, for the fine bipartisan effort on this important nabble serity issue. i think people at home can rest
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assured that we have taken every precaution to protect our civil liberty, which we all cherish in this nation, and still have the ability to collect on foreigners overseas seeking to harm this great country. i want to thank you for your work and commend the president for his letter of support of our bipartisan effort on this important national security issue and with that, mr. speaker, i would yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. all time for debate on the bill has expired. pursuant to house resolution 773, the previous question is ordered on the bill as amended. the question is on engrossment and third reading of the bill.
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the speaker pro tempore: the question is on engrossment and third reading of the bill. those in favor say aye. those oppod, no. the ay have it. third reading. the clerk: a bill to extend the fisa amendments act of 2008 for five years. the eaker pro tempor the question is on passage of the bill. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the bill is passed. without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. mr. ruppersberger: i request a vote by the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those favoring a vote by the yeas and nays will rise a sufficient number having risen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rululull
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>> the house went on to approve a five-year extension of the fisa law. the house returns to morning at 10 a .m. among those considered, a temporary spending bill. on the repeal of the energy department's loan guarantee program. live gavel-to-gavel coverage of the house here on c-span. the head of the consumer financial protection bureau gives an update on the progress of the agency. he was named director of the bureau as a recess appointment in january. he will testify before the senate banking committee. watch it live on c-span-3 and c- span.org beginning at 10:00 a.m. eastern time. >> i think people really like to
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see where politicians' views have shifted over the years. people want to see whether mitt romney 1994 was campaigning for or against welfare reform, for abortion. they want to see where he was a during his 2002 campaign, 2007. people like to see how these politicians have evolved. there is an element that is almost a gotcha elapids. ement. >> i have tried to think why this he has changed so often. why he finds it so difficult to come down on one side of an issue. >> he's running for state office for the first time. does that help that there is a governor named blagovich or you are barack obama?
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>> he is a hero of mine. >> it is the viral beating heart of the internet. >> more sunday night at 8 p.m. on "q&a". >> unlike "washington journal", i like the sessions of congress. it is the closest thing to unfiltered news, the last version of unfiltered news on the air. "washington journal" is a very good, because i like how the host asked a wide range of questions. and obviously because you take questions from callers. helps facilitate and engagement of people at home. i'm baffled that networks do not take your example and try to copy it. it is a wonderful program. when you cover congress, that is on for entered journalism -- unfiltered and journalism. >> c-span, created by america's
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cable companies in 1979, brought to you as a public service by your television provider. news borke this morning on the attacks on the u.s. consulate in libya. four americans were killed in those attacks. the house observed a moment of silence. the chairman asks all present to rise and observe a moment of silence in honor of ambassador stevens and the american personnel killed in libya.
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>> chris stevens was the first u.s. ambassador killed in 30 years. he and three other americans were remembered today and a number of events across washington and elsewhere. we are going to watch to see what president obama, a gop presidential candidate mitt romney, and secretary of state hillary clinton had to say today about what happened. >> good morning. every day, all across the world, american diplomats and civilians work tirelessly to advance the interests of our nation.
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often, they are away from their families.sometimes, they brave great danger. yesterday, four of these extraordinary americans were killed in an attack on our diplomatic post in benghazi. among those killed was our ambassador, chris stevens, as well as foreign service officer sean smith.we are still notifying the families of the others who were killed.and today, the american people stand united in holding the families of the four americans in our thoughts and in our prayers. the united states condemns in the strongest terms this outrageous and shocking attack.we're working with the government of libya to secure our diplomats.i've also directed my administration to increase our security at diplomatic posts around the world.and make no mistake, we will work with the libyan government to bring to justice the killers who attacked our people. since our founding, the united states has been a nation that respects all faiths. we reject all efforts to
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denigrate the religious beliefs of others.but there is absolutely no justification to this type of senseless violence. none. the world must stand together to brutal acts.these already, many libyans have joined us in doing so, and this attack will not break the bonds between the united states and libya. libyan security personnel fought back against the attackers alongside americans. libyans helped some of our diplomats find safety, and they carried ambassador stevens's body to the hospital, where we tragically learned that he had died. it's especially tragic that chris stevens died in benghazi because it is a city that he helped to save. at the height of the libyan revolution, chris led our diplomatic post in benghazi. with characteristic skill, courage, and resolve, he built partnerships with libyan revolutionaries, and helped
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them as they planned to build a new libya. when the gaddafi regime came to an end, chris was there to serve as our ambassador to the new libya, and he worked tirelessly to support this young democracy, and i think both secretary clinton and i relied deeply on his knowledge of the situation on the ground there. he was a role model to all who worked with him and to the young diplomats who aspire to walk in his footsteps. along with his colleagues, chris died in a country that is still striving to emerge from the recent experience of war. today, the loss of these four americans is fresh, but our memories of them linger on. i have no doubt that their legacy will live on through the work that they did far from our shores and in the hearts of those who love them back home. of course, yesterday was already a painful day for our nation as
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we marked the solemn memory of the 9/11 attacks. we mourned with the families who were lost on that day. i visited the graves of troops who made the ultimate sacrifice in iraq and afghanistan at the hallowed grounds of arlington cemetery, and had the opportunity to say thank you and visit some of our wounded warriors at walter reed. and then last night, we learned the news of this attack in benghazi. as americans, let us never, ever forget that our freedom is only sustained because there are people who are willing to fight for it, to stand up for it, and in some cases, lay down their lives for it. our country is only as strong as the character of our people and the service of those both civilian and military who represent us around the globe. no acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character, or eclipse the light of the
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values that we stand for. today we mourn four more americans who represent the very best of the united states of america. we will not waver in our commitment to see that justice is done for this terrible act. and make no mistake, justice will be done. but we also know that the lives these americans led stand in stark contrast to those of their attackers. these four americans stood up for freedom and human dignity. they should give every american great pride in the country that they served, and the hope that our flag represents to people around the globe who also yearn to live in freedom and with dignity. we grieve with their families, but let us carry on their memory, and let us continue their work of seeking a stronger america and a better world for all of our children. thank you. may god bless the memory of those we lost and may god bless the united states of america.
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>> is this an host: caller: >> good morning. americans woke up this morning with heavy hearts. individuals were brutally murdered across the world. this attack on american individuals and embassies is outrageous, disgusting, and it breaks the hearts of all of us who think of these people who have served during their lives for freedom, justice, an honor. we mourn their loss. we join together in prayer that
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the spirit of the almighty might come for the families of those who have been so brutally slain. four diplomats lost their lives, including the u.s. ambassador, in the attack on our embassy in libya. i extend my condolences to the league -- to the grieving loved ones who have left behind as a result of these who have lost their lives in the service of our nation. i know the people across america are grateful for their service and we mourn their sacrifice. america will not tolerate attacks against our citizens and against our embassies. we will defend our constitutional rights of speech, assembly, and religion. we have confidence in our cause in america. we respect our constitution. we stand for the principles our
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constitution protects. we encourage other nations to understand and respect the principles of the constitution because we recognize these principles are the ultimate source of freedom for individuals around the world. i also believe the administration was wrong to stand by a statement sympathizing with those who had reached our embassy in egypt. instead of condemning their actions. it is never too early for the united states government to condemn attacks on americans and to defend our values. the white house distanced itself last night from a statement, saying it was not cleared by washington. that reflects the mixed signals they are sending to the world. the attacks in libya and egypt_ that the world remains a dangerous place and american leadership is still sorely needed. in the face of this violence, americas -- america cannot shrink from the responsibility
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to lead. american leadership is necessary to ensure in vents -- events in the region cannot spiral out of control. we can not hesitate to use our influence in the region to support those who share our values and interest. over the last several years, we stood witness to a spring that presented an opportunity for a more peaceful and prosperous region. if the forces of extremism and violence are allowed to control the forces of events, we must strive to assure the spring comes not become -- i will take any questions you may have. >> a toughly worded statement last night. do you regret what you said and all given what we know now? >> the embassy in cairo put out a statement after their grounds had been breached. reiterated their
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statement after the breach. i think it is a terrible course for america to stand in apology for our values. instead, when our grounds are being attacked and being breached, that the first response of the united states oft be outrage at the breach the sovereignty of our nation. an apology for america's values is never the right course. >> do you think coming so soon after the events really has unfolded overnight was appropriate to be weighing in on this crisis as it is unfolding in real time? >> the white house also issued a statement saying it tried to distance itself from those comments and said it was not reflecting of their eat -- of their views. i had the same reaction. these views were inappropriate. and they were the wrong course to take cheered when our embassy has been breached by protesters, the first response should not be to say, we stand by our comments
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that suggest that there is something wrong with the right of free speech. >> what to the right house to wrong if they put out a statement saying they disagreed with it? >> their administration spoke. the president takes responsibility for the words that come from his ambassadors, from his administration, from his embassies, from the state department. they clearly send mixed messages to the world. the statement that came from the administration and the embassy is the administration. the statement came from the administration was a statement which is akin to apology and i think was a severe miscalculation. >> the world was watching. isn't this in itself a mixed signal? shouldn't politics stop? >> we have a campaign for presidency of the united states and are speaking about the different gorgeous it -- courses we would each take with regard
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to challenge as the world faces. the president and i have differences uof opinion with regards to israel, ron, afghanistan, syria appeared we have many places of distinction and differences scared we join together in the condemnation on the attacks and join in the sympathy for these people. but it is also important for me, just as it was for the white house last night, by the way, to say that the statements were inappropriate and, in my view, a disgraceful statement on the part of our administration to apologize for american values. >> they jumped the gun and little and should have waited until more details were available. do you regret having that statement come out early? >> i do not think we ever hesitate when we see something which is a violation of our principles. we express immediately when we feel the president and his and
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administration have done something which is inconsistent with the principles of america. simply put, having an embassy which has been breached and has protesters on its grounds, having violated the sovereignty of the united states, having that embassy reiterate a statement, affectively apologizing for the right of free speech, is not the right course for administration. >> if you had known last night that the ambassador died, i'm guessing you did not know, if you had known he had died kids a class i will not take a hypothetical. we responded last night. >> now that farm policy in the middle east has been in the middle -- a are you better qualified than president obama? >> i think president obama has demonstrated a lack of clarity as to a foreign policy.
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my farm policy has three fundamental branches. the first -- confidence in our cause. in recognition of the principles america was based upon are not something we shrink from or apologize for. we stand for those principles. the second is clarity in our purpose. when we have a foreign policy objective, we describe it honestly and clearly to the american people, to congress, and to the people of the world. number three is resolved in our might. in those rare circumstances, those rare circumstances where we decide it is essential for us to apply military might, that we do so with overwhelming force, that we do so in the clarity of a mission, understanding the nature of the u.s. interest involved, understanding when the mission would be complete, what would be left when it is terminated. these elements, i believe, are essential to our foreign policy
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and i have not seen them from the president carried out by hat -- as i have watched over the past 3.5 years, the president has had some successes. he has had some failures. it is a hit or miss approach but it is not based upon sound foreign policy. >> how would president romney have handled the situation differently than president obama? how would you have handled this a different -- differently than the president dead? >> the embassy of the united states issued what appeared to be an apology for american principles. that was a mistake. i believe when a mistake is made of that significance, you speak out. >> governor romney. >> yesterday, our u.s. diplomatic post in libya was
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attacked. heavily armed militants a salted the compound and set fire to our buildings. american and libyan security personnel battled the attackers together. four americans were killed. they included a foreign service information management officer and our ambassador to libya. we are still making next of kin notifications for the other two individuals. this is an attack that should shock the conscience of people of all so -- of all faiths are around the world. we condemn in the strongest terms this senseless act of violence and we send our prayers to the families, friends, and colleagues of those we have lost. all over the world, every day,
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america's diplomats and development experts risk their lives in the service of our country and our values. because they believe the united states must be a force for peace and progress in the world. that these aspirations car worth striving and sacrificing for. alongside our men and women in uniform, they represent the best traditions of an old and generous nation. in the lobby of this building, at the state department, the names of those who have fallen in a line of duty are inscribed in marble. our hearts ache over each one. now, because of this tragedy, we have new heroes to honor and more friends to mourn. chris stevens fell in love with
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the middle east as a young peace corps volunteer teaching english and morocco. he joined the foreign service, learned languages, one friends for america in distant places, and made other people's hopes his own. in the early days of the libyan revolution, i asked chris to be our envoy to the rebel position. he arrived on a cargo ship and began building our relationship with libya's revolutionaries. he risked his life to stop a tyrant, then gave his life trying to help build a better libya. the world needs more chris stevens. i spoke with his sister this
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morning and told her he will be remembered as a hero by many nations. sean smith was an air force veteran. he spent 10 years as an information management officer in the state department. libya posted aand was in as -- for a brief temporary assignment. he was a husband to his wife, heather, with whom i spoke this morning. he was a father to two young children. samantha and nathan. they will grow up being proud of the service their father gave to our country. service that took him from to baghdad. commission that drew chris and sean and their colleagues to libya is both noble and necessary.
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we and the people of libya honor their memory by carrying it forward. this is not easy. today, many americans are asking, indeed, i ask myself, how could this happen? how could this happen in a country we helped to liberate, in a city we helped save from destruction? this question reflects just how complicated and, at times, how confounding the world can be. but we must be clear-eyed, even in our grief. this was an attack by a small and savage group, not the people or government of libya. everywhere chris and his team went in libya, in a country
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scarred by war and tyranny, they were held as friends and partners, and when the attack came yesterday, libyans stood and fought to defend our post. some were wounded. libyans carried chris's body to the hospital and they helped rescue and lead other americans to safety. last night, when i spoke with the president of libya, he strongly condemned the violence and pledged every effort to protect our people and pursue those responsible. the friendship between our countries, born out of shared struggle, will not be another casualty of this attack. a free and stable libya is still an american -- in america's interest and security.
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we will not turn our back on that. nor will we rest until those responsible for these attacks are found and brought to justice. we are working closely with the libyan authorities to move quickly and surely. we are also working with partners around the world to safeguard other american embassies, consulates, and citizens. there will be more time later to reflect, but today, we have work to do. there is no higher priority than protecting our men and women wherever they serve. we are working to determine the precise motivations and methods of those who carried out this assault. some have sought to justify this vicious behavior, along with the protests, that took place at our embassy in cairo yesterday, as a result to -- response to a full
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amatory video on the internet. america's commitment to tolerance goes back to the very beginning of our nation. but let me be clear. there is no justification for this. none. violence like this is no way to honor religion or faith. as long as there are those who would take innocent life in the name of god, the world will never know a true and lasting peace. it is expressly difficult that this happened on september 11. it is an anniversary that means a great deal to all americans. every year on that day, we are reminded that our work has not yet been finished. the job of putting an end to violent extremism and building a
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safe and stable world continues. but september 11 means even more than that. it is a day on which we remember thousands of american heroes. the bonds that connect all americans wherever we are on this earth and the values that see us through every storm. now, it is a day on which we will remember shawn, chris, and their colleagues. may god bless them and made god bless the thousands of americans working in every corner of the world who make this country the greatest force for peace, prosperity, and progress. and a force that has always stood for a human dignity, the greatest force the world has ever known.
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and may god continue to bless the united states of america. thank you. >> reporters have been tweeting updates about libya. >> the flag at the u.s. capital being lower today in honor of the deaths of the four americans in libya. the president also had flags be
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put at half staff at all military buildings in the world until sunset on sunday. members of congress reacted to the assassination of the four american diplomats. we will start here with harry reid and mitch mcconnell. very disturbed when late last night, and really saddened to learn of the death of ambassador chris stevens and three other american personnel in an attack on the u.s. consolate in libya and would be happy to talk by name about them but their names have not been released at this stage. it does take away how important these jobs are of these foreign service officers. i join president obama in condemning these senseless acts of violence. my thoughts are with the families of those who were killed in this horrible attack
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it is too often forgotten that american diplomats risk their lives on a daily basis. madam president, when i have had the good fortune since my days in the foreign affairs committee in the house to travel the world, i always make sure wherever i go i visit with foreign service personnel. they're every place. there's no group of people, i tell them that every timist opportunity to visit with them, no one does our country more in a positive sense than these foreign service officers. they work so hard and duty stations most of the times are very, very difficult. take, for example, this good man, ambassador stevens, who was just confirmed a fuel months ago -- a few months ago, he was a peace corps volunteer, he taught english. he's fluent in arabic, french and english. he served in the foreign service
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in jerusalem, in cairo, saudi arabia and staff assistant to the bureau of middle eastern affairs. he had an education that was really unbelievably strong and powerful. he graduated from berkeley. he had a law degree from hastings, one of the premier law schools in the country. he has a masters degree from national war college. what a loss to our country. our diplomatic corps is filled with admirable and dedicated public servants, and the four americans who lost their lives yesterday exemplified the courage and sacrifice that happens every day in diplomatic posts around the globe. they learn the language, they live with the people where they go. as i've indicated, eiffel
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traveled to many of the american embassies abroad. i've always been so impressed and grateful for the leadership and i communicate that to them every chance i get. i'm so -- we're so fortunate to have had for the last three and a half years hillary clinton leading the state department. i've indicated ambassador stevens was not a political appointment -- appointee. he was a foreign service officer, as i indicated served in the peace corps, spent his life giving of his time and his talents to promote democracy around the world. i supported president obama's directive to provide whatever resources are necessary to keep our personnel in libya safe. i'll continue to monitor the situation as we learn more about
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mr. mcconnell: madam president? the presiding officer: the republican leader. mr. mcconnell: we learned yesterday and are receiving reports this morning of the atcks against the united states embassy in cairo and the u.s. consulate in bengazi in libya. in libya, our ambassador chris stevens and three other americans were killed in the service of our nation. our thoughts and sympathies today are with the families of these brave americans. these attacks remind us of the sacrifices made on a daily basisaway foreign service officers, diplomatic security personnel and our marine security guards. i join my cleagues in strongly condemning the murder of these innocent americans, and i strongly support employing every available tool at our disposal
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to ensure the safety of americans overseas and to hunt down those responsible for these attacks. yestery, we commemorated the anniversary of the attacks of september 11, and today we are reminded that bravemericans serve us every day at the risk of their own lives. we honor the americans we lost in libya and we will stand united in our response. among the things we can agree on in washington is that the attacks on the u.s. and its representatives will be met with resolve and that america's presence and defense of our national interests across the globe will not be deterred by the acts of violent extremists. i yi safely as well. when i woke up this morning, i woke up to terrible news, to learn that our ambassador in libya had been killed by a mob.
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so we've lost ambassador chris stevens. we lost three others at the american embassy in libya. and it is a terrible tragedy. and at the same time yesterday our embassy in cairo was stormed. but thanks to the vigilance its leadership and our wonderful marine corps, their defending the embassy, we lost no one in cairo. but, madam president, i, first of all, want to extend to all of the families who lost someone in libya overnight my extreme and definite condolences and sympathy. i'm at a little bit of a loss for words because these tragedies that to our men and women who serve at our embassy happen all too frequently, and then we say a grateful nation
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never forgets, and then we go on to bash our federal employees and our state department people saying oh, they have these cushy jobs in exotic places and they must be out eating brie somewhere. i lost the cold war bombings diplomats, ambassador bartley, head of our consolate service, was serving there, his son interned there his summer, wanted to be like his dad. they died there. they died there. but he was at his duty station. and, you know, it's been almost 15 years. and then, oh yeah. well, it's not an oh yeah. these men and women are serving the united states of america. they were at their duty station. they were trying to help libya rise up now to be able to create a government and be able to create opportunity for its own people, and they gave their lives.
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ambassador chris stevens had already served two tours in libya, but wanted to go back again at this new moment in history to stand up, to help libya stand up a true government that was free and would give their people a chance at democracy and participating in a new middle east. and then there was sean smith, who was a ten-year veteran of foreign service. he was an information management officer. he had served in iraq. he's a father, a father of two children, a devoted husband. we now know what happened to them. so we must continue our strong partnership with libya after the fall of qadhafi. but i call upon the new leadership, call for calm, call for tolerance, call for you're angry. there are ways to do protests and so on. you don't have to go around
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killing the american ambassador when our air people, our air force flew over libya and our president and our congress work to support this new government coming up. and then there's cairo. because of anger over a video -- and i don't know about this video. i don't know its content. but i do know the outcome, that our embassy in cairo was stormed. they tore down our american flag, they replaced it with another flag. but we are under the flag of the united states of america and our flag is in egypt, our flag is in egypt because we are great allies to the egyptian government and great supporters of the egyptian people as they come through the arab spring and again trying to create a new day and a new way. i say to ambassador paterson and the entire staff, again, our
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thoughts and prayers are with you. i was in cairo. i know what they do every day. i know how during the arab spring many of them were locked in the embassy trying to keep our government functioning while their own families had to be evacuated. some didn't see their families for three weeks because they were inside the pwaepl is i, they couldn't leave, and we had the most massive evacuation of civilian employees in our history, since really the beginning of some other armed conflicts. so i say to those embassy staff, both our wonderful ambassador, paterson, but to a lot of the little people who work at the embassy, people who keep the commercial commerce office open, the people doing the wonderful work with n.g.o.'s to show them how to work, to build a free and new kind of society and also to the foreign nationals who work in you are embassy. so we think about you. i say to the leadership of those
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countries again, call for calm, call for tolerance. but i say to my colleagues here, we've got to call for calm and tolerance right in this institution. we've got to really support our men and women in the state department, our men and women in the military, all who serve overseas are representatives of united states of america, whether you are the peace corps or the marine corps, whether you are the foreign service or the commercial service or whatever, you're in the service of the united states of america, promoting our values trying to help promote democracy and also trying to have economic and strategic cooperation. i thank our foreign service staff, many of them live in maryland. but that's not the point. they live in the united states of america. and so i say to all when you point your finger and say we
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really don't need a government, i think we do need a government. and when we talk about standing up for our military now in these tough budget times, absolutely we should. but remember there are other overseas who also carry our flag in very dangerous areas. so let's start respecting the people for our -- who work for our government. let's make sure they have the right resources to do their job and then let our president, our talented secretary of the help work with the others to work with other world leaders to do something to really bring about stability. so, madam president, i feel very strongly about this. i guess what you're hearing from senator mikulski is grief for what's happened in libya, worry about what's happened in cairo,
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tension about what continues to happen in the middle east, and then frustration about what goes on here. when after all is said and done, what is said gets done and what is said is often not very good. the world is watching us here. we're supposed to be the greatest democracy in the world. not only are we supposed to be but i believe they are. but democracy begins with us. democracy is not always something written on a piece of paper which are our founding documents. but we have to live what is within those founding documents. we have to, first of all, start with civility, start with respect, start with conversations among ourselves about how we can truly work together to help our country and to help our country help the t without objection is granted. mr. mccain: mr. president, it's with a heavy heart that i
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rise today to speak about the horrific attack yesterday on the u.s. consulate in been gaza that killed -- benghazi that killed four american citizens. the two confirmed thus far among the dead are slawn smith, an air force veteran turned information management officer and ambassador chris stevens, one of america's finest and bravest foreign service officers. i didn't know sean smith, i know he's a great american who served his country, but i had gotten to know chris stevens quite well. and ambassador chris stevens' death, the libyan people have lost a champion and believer in the peaceful aspirations of their docratic revolution. the american people have lost a selfless and dedicated servant of our interests and our
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values, and i have lost a friend. my thoughts and prayers today are with chris' family and the loved ones of his fallen colleagues. my god grant them comfort in their time of grief. our most urge vent -- urgent order of business is now is to ensure our citizens in libya and egypt and elsewhere across the world are safe. americans look to the government in libya and egypt and elsewhere to meet their responsibilities in this regard. we also look to the libyan government to ensure that those responsible for yesterday's attack in benghazi are swiftly brought to justice. in all of these critical tasks we are confident our government will provide all necessary assistance and support. yesterday's attacks are an important reminder so many of american civilians and diplomats and development professnals
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are risking everything, everything to advance our nation's interests and values abroad. we must do everything in our power to ensure their security. at the same time, our thoughts turn to broader concerns. the morning of our fallen friends -- mourning of our fallen friends and how we as a nation should respond to these tragic events. one of my most memorable meetings with chris steeives was last april in benghazi. as envoy to the libyan opposition chris had traveled to benghazi at personal risk to represent the country that he loved so much whi libya was still gripped in a brutal fight for freedom. it was clear there was nowhere that chris would rather have been than libya. we spent the day together meeting libyan opposition leaders and many ordinary citizens who spoke movingly about how much the opportunity to finally live in freedom meant
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to them. and how grateful they were for america's support. chris stevens embodied that support, and his passion for his mission was infectious. i kept in touch with him often and frequently after my visit, i was very happy when president obama nominated him to be america's ambassador to the new libya. the last time i saw chris stevens was shortly after he had taken up hisost during my most recent visit to trip olie. -- tripoli. i remember the lighter moments we spent together including when chris insisted on personally making me a capital ewe china', a -- chan achino, which he deard he carried out with proficiency. that was on the morning of july 7, the day libyans voted in their first election in half a
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century. chris stevens and i spent the day together again, traveling around tripoli, visiting polling places and speaking with libyan voters. we met a man whose father had been murdered by qadhafi's henchmen. we met a woman whose brothers had given their lives fighting for liberation. we met countless others including many older libyans who were voting for the first time in their lives. and everywhere we went, we were greeted by crowds of cheering libyans bursting with pride and eager to shake our hands and express their gratitude for america's support. it was one of the most moving experiences of my life, and it was only made better by the fact that i got to share it with our outstanding ambassador, chris stevens.
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what we saw together on that day was the real libya, the peaceful desire of millions of people to live in freedom and democracy. the immense gratitude they felt for america's support for them. and their strong desire to build a new partnership between our nations. that's why i'm not surprised that senior libyan leaders were among the first to conde the horrific attack that killed chris and his colleagues, and that's why i was not surprised to learn from our secretary of state that many libyans fought to defend our people and our consulate in benghazi when they came under attack, that some were wounded while doing so. and that it was libyans who sought to get chris and his colleagueso the hospital. and that's why we can't afford to view the despicable acts of violence perpetrate he yet by a
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small group of fanatics as in any way representative of the country and the people of libya. that's not the real libya. the libya that chris stevens knew and learned to love so well. after such a heartbreaking loss for our nation, i know that many americans are asking whether the united states was naive or miss taken to support -- mistaken to support the vast movement for change that cell phone as therab spring. i know many americans may feel a temptati especially with so many domestic and economic challenges facing us here at home, to distance ourselves from people and events in libya and egypt and elsewhere in the middle east. we cannot afford to go down that path. yesterday's attack in benghazi was the work of a small group of
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violent extremists whose goals and actions could not be more at odds with those of the people and government of libya. the libyan revolution began peacefully and was dedicated throughout to the ideals of freedom and justice and democratic change. and when libyans turned out by the millions to elect a new government in july, they gave the plurality of theirote not to religious fanatics but t a political party led by a moderate tech know carat and -- technospcrat and committed to friendship with the united states. libyans rose up last year to free themselves from exactly the kinds of murderers and terrorists who killed our american citizens yesterday in benghazi. thr enemies are our enemies, and they remain as committed as ever to imposing their evil
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ideology through violence on people in libya and the middle east and ultimately on us. they want to hijack the arab spring for their own insidious purposes, and if we turn our backs now on the millions of people in libya and egypt and syria and other countries across the middle east, people who are so many of our values and interests, people who are the true authors of the arab spring, we will hand our common enemies the terrorists and extremists, the very victory that they seek. we were right to take the side of the libyan people and others in the religious who share their peaceful aspirations and we would be gravely mistaken to walk away from them now. to do so would only be a betrayal of everything that chris stevens and his colleagues believed in and ultimately gave
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their lives for. it would be a betrayal of america's highest values and our own enduring national interest in supporting people in the middle east and the world who want to live in peace and freedom. mr. president, i'm pleased to be joined by my friend from connecticut and i know that he shares with me the sorrow that we and all americans feel at the loss of a brave and dedicated american. but it will be a long time before we forget chris stevens, because he will stand as a shining example ofatriotism and love of country. chris stevens was not unaware of the danger that he faced. he was privy to intelligence information and others.
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but he went forward and did his job with a smile, the love of his country, and love of the country where he was serving. i cannot be more proud of ambassador chris stevens. mr. lieberman: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from connecticut. mr. lieberman: mr. president, i thank my friend from arizona for his very eloquent statement. i associate myself with it. it strikes me as i listen that it was no accident that these violent extreme extremists launched this attack on the american consulate in benghazi, tripoli on 9/11, a day of infamy in our history, a day when people across our country and really around the world were commemorating the worst terrorist attack in our history which was september 11, 2001.
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those who perpetrated the attack on the consulate in benghazi which resulted in the death of our ambassador, chris stevens, carried out an act of terrorism and barbarism that they hope will sow fear and hatred between americans and muslims, just as osama bin laden and his followers hoped the attacks of 9/11 would do 11 years ago. but we did not let bin laden succeed then, and we will not let these violent extremists who killed chris stevens yesterday in benghazi succeed in dividing america and the west from muslims and the arab world. well-intentioned peopl in both
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great communities will rise up and join together to renounce these extremists and killers. i want speak for a moment about ambassador stevens. simply put, chris stevens was one of the finest, bravest, most spirited, most talented diplomats in our nation's service. as a volunteer in the peace corps, he served in morocco where he was inspired to pursue a lifetime of service in the middle east. when the uprising against moammar qadhafi beg in february of last year, chris was the deputy chief of mission of our ambassador in tripo, libya. he was vaikd along with other -- evacuated along with other american personnel from the country but returned to libya within weeks as the special envoy of the united states of america to the opposition there. courageously slipping into
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rebel-held benghazi on board a cargo freighter. it was an act of bravery that typified chris stevens' service to our country, and his devotion to our nation's ideals and his commitment to build bridges between americans and arabs, americans and muslims. chris remained in benghazi throughout the war, standing with the people of libya during some of the darkest and most difficult hours in their struggle for freedom. he became, in fact, the bright symbol of america, heroic and inspiring figure to many libyans. as senator mccain and senator graham and i heard during our visits there and was thus the natural choice of president obama to become our ambassador to tripoli after the cad cads -- qadhafi regime fell. this is why his death at the hand of violent extremists in
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benghazi which was the seat of the revolutn against qadhafi, is so tragic and infuriating. there is obviously much we still don't know about what happened our consulate in benghazi yesterday, but what is clear is that these attackers have to be apprehended and must be punished. i'm encouraged but not surprised by the statements of libya's leaders condemning this attack d i say i'm not surprised because these statements of condemnation of those who killed chris stevens are consistent with what i know the leaders of the new libya to be, what i know to be their profound admiration and love for chris stevens and their respect and gratitude for the united states of america. we look now to the libyan government to act swiftly and
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decisively and to our own government to provide the libyans whatever support they need to find the attackers and killers. while a specific group of individuals was responsible for this evil act and their target immediately was the americans in that consulate, but really their target was the new order in libya. and they were animated in this by an ideology that is now all too familiar to us that we cannot ignore or excuse. this hateful and violent ideology is a threat not just to the lives of americans like chris stevens and the three othersho died yesterday in benghazi, but to the future of libya and the future of the muslim world. it is the exact opposite of the ideals that inspired millions of libyans to rise up last year against qadhafi to realize their
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dreams of a life ofignity, democracy and human rights. for that reason, it is imperative now for those libyan people themselves to echo their leaders and condemn this violence and take on the extremists who have taken shelter in their midst and who threaten to hijack their revolution and imperil the future of their country, returning them to days as dark as under qadhafi. i know that the orwhelming majority of libyans reject this violent extremist agenda. they want a good education for their children. they want foreign investment that will create job and raise their standard of living. after 42 years of despair and oppression under qadhafi, they badly want again to be part of the world, part of the modern world, and the united stas
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should stand ready and willing to help them on that path. the fact is that the people who killed chris stevens yesterday in benghazi do not represent the people of libya or their elected leadership. but these killings require confronting the extremist minority that imperils this future, the fanatics who want a clash of civilizations between muslims and the west and who will try to justify their violence in the name of islam. they are wrong. they are mistaken. they are on the wrong side of history. and finally, let me come back home and say, to echo what senator mccain has said, that i know there will be some here in our country who, in the wake of this attack, will be tempted to argue that it shows that america'support for the libyan revolution was naive or mistaken, that the arab spring will ultimately be defined not
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by a desire for democracy and freedom among the people of the middle east and arab world, but by the dark fanaticism of al qaeda and its associates and united states should give up trying to support people in this part of the world instead of -- and instead retrench back here at home. that would be terribly wrong. that would misunderstand the motivations of the people who have risen up in the arab world to overthrow the totalitarian governments that dominated their lives. they don't want the fanaticism of al qaeda. they want the bright light of a democratic future. we cannot allow what happened yesterday to be a victory for the extremists and the terrorists, because to do so would be a betrayal of everything ambassador chris stevens stood for, which is to say a betrayal of america's best
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ideals. mr. president, i note the presence on the floor of of the senator from south carolina and i would yield to him at this time. mr. graham: thank you. mr. president, i'll speak just ve briefly. the presiding officer: the senator from south carolina. mr. graham: there's not a whole lot to -- to be added to the eloquent statements of my two friends other than just to b here and to let the family of chris stevens know that we saw in yr loved one what you sa saw -- a wonderful man who did great things with a life cut way too short. i don't think most americans can ever appreciate the leadership that chris provided in libya and throughout the world at a time when we needed it the most. so america's lost one of her greatest diplomats. the libyans have lost one of their best friends. and the sphream lost their dear loved one. and the one thing i can say for sure, as senator lieberman just mentioned it, don't compound
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this tragedy. the worst possible outcome is to take the -- death of this wonderful, noble man and use it as an excuse sceus t and withdrm the region andal trough to return to the extremists -- and allow it to return to the extremists. to the americans who are trust frustrated, i totally get it. but the arab spring -- cal it what you like --ut it is an historic opportunity to change things in the middle east. but it will not come without fight. what we're trying to do in the mid-east and what the people in the mideast are trying to into have a better life for themselves. if you're a young people, you've been exposed to a life outside of the country life of the country in which you leave and you see it can be better. and quite frankly, you're demanding a better life. you're demanding an equal say if you're a young woman. and you're demanding a class if it's not available to you today.
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chris stevens rked his live because he understood those ideals were just understood what we were fighting. and the libyan people who who we are fighting are the ones who have no interest in this agenda, of being able to choose a better path for young people, to being tolerant, open, accept free markets and have a place where people can live their own dreams. and the world of which we're fighting, your dreams are defined by the ayatollahs. your aspirations are defined by someone else's view of where you should go and what you should be based on their ierpretation of god's plan for you. now, that to me is so unacceptable that is com compels people like cis steven cis likeo risk their lives. the people in the countries
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now have been exposed to a different way of life. given the capacity, they have the will to fight back. but if you think this is going to be done without a struggle, we're kidding ourselves. chris knew that. he knew that the fight that was going on for the heart and soul of the arab spring in libya was a fight worth engaging in and, yes, risking one's le for. and what more can you say about a fellow human being, an american than the fact that they realized that their time on earth could be best spent in service of a cause, as senator mccain says, greater than themselves? chris understood what was at stake. he went to a place that he did not have to go. he accepted risks that he could have avoided. and he did it for all the right reasons. and the one thing we should all unite around is that what compelled chris stevens to risk his life is absolutely in our national security interest and that is to get the mideast
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right, have a second opportunity never known before in the mideast to live in peace with people who in the past wanted to kill us all. and i am convinced if we stick with it and we learn the lessons of chris stevens' life, we will eventually prevail. because the ones who want to kill us all are really a minority. the ones who would live with us in peace if they could just need our help. and let it be said that chris stevens was there to help. thank you. mr. mccain: i thank my frien for his eloqut words. i'd also ain like to emphasize, there was four brave americans -- four -- shawn smith was one of them, a truly great american. there are two others we don't even know their identity. so i hope that the families who have suffered this loss appreciate that we grieve for

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